Monday, August 6, 2007

Kenyan Politician Defends Proposal to Increase Women in Politics



Justice and Constitutional Affairs minister Martha Karua of Kenya is stirring up some controversy! What could she have possibly done to create such controversy? Well, as this article suggests, apparently she supported a move to set aside 50 positions for women in a parliament where women only represent 2% of the ministers.

The minister said the proposal would push the representation of women to a mere 20 per cent and urged critics to stop reading mischief in the move.

"President Kibaki's Government supports more women representation in Parliament so they work alongside the male MPs," Karua said

So aside from the controversy that suggests that this is just a 'cheap' apppeal to women voters before an election, there is also the idea that it seems fundamentally unfair that women are given representation when other groups are not. In the below excerpt, Tom Aosa suggests that it is unfair that youth and the disabled are not given positions as well.
How do readers feel about programs that encourage an increase in female representation and ignore other marginalized groups? How do readers also feel about Mr. Aosa's contention that women should just go for the seats instead of waiting for them?


Meanwhile, Community Based Organisations are opposed to the creation of the proposed 50 parliamentary seats for women.

The organisations, through their national chairman, Mr Tom Aosa, questioned the move and said it would set a bad precedent.

Aosa wondered why it was the women that had to benefit from the seats and not other groups like the disabled or youth.

"At what stage was it decided that women had to get more seats in Parliament and not the marginalized?" he posed. Speaking to journalists in Naivasha, Aosa challenged women to go for the seats rather than sit back and wait for them.

He said that was a move by Government to get women votes come the General Election.

No comments: