What you need to know:
- They said politicians who opposed the handshake cannot not purport to help Kenyans interpret the report.
- They said such politicians could mislead and confuse unsuspecting citizens.
- The women castigated a section of Tangatanga leaders whom they said are disrespectful to the President.
A group of women from central Kenya and Rift Valley drawn from Kikuyu Council of Elders Women League have told off politicians who have initiated the sensitisation of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report and instead want the State to introduce civic education to the grassroots.
The women claim that politicians, some of whom they say have been opposed to the initiative between President Uhuru Kenyatta and opposition chief Raila Odinga, cannot not purport to help Kenyans in reading and interpreting the report.
They said such politicians could mislead and confuse unsuspecting citizens.
Speaking at Golden Palm Hotel in Kenol town, Murang’a County on Wednesday, the women leaders urged the government to take the report at the grassroots for Kenyans to see whether their views were captured and to discuss ways in which their opinions could be incorporated before discussing the way forward.
Led by the council's Secretary-General Sarah Wanjiku, the women leaders said politicians have mixed the BBI debate with 2022 politics, a they said has diluted the BBI taskforce's main objective of creating a better Kenya.
"The BBI report has been politicised by a section of leaders who have mixed it with the 2022 general elections and this was not the spirit of the President when he initiated the report. We fail to understand why some of the leaders were opposed to the idea of the handshake between the President and Mr Odinga while they never raised an issue when the same President teamed up with Deputy President William Ruto in 2013," Ms Wanjiku said.
The women castigated a section of Tangatanga leaders whom they said are disrespectful to the President who assisted them get elected.
"It's even worse to see that leaders who hail from the Agikuyu community are the ones disrespecting the head of State who is also the community’s leader," Ms Wanjiku said.
FIGHT AGAINST GRAFT
At the same time, the women expressed their unconditional support to the President in his fight against corruption, urging him to stop at nothing until all graft suspects have been charged.
"As women leaders, we shall support the President and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations and that of public prosecutions to arrest and charge anyone connected with corruption without fear or intimidation from some leaders. Let him know that ordinary Kenyans are behind his efforts to salvage the country from the corrupt," said the council’s secretary-general.
At the same time, the Kikuyu Council of Elders Secretary-General Peter Munga accused some politicians of abandoning their duty for personal gain.
"Some of these leaders have negated their responsibilities of working for their electorates and instead are running after illicit money for their personal gains and that's why they don't care [and are] insulting the President. We caution them not to hurl insults and [instead] set a good example to those who are looking up to them as their role models," Mr Munga said.