9 March 2016 at Parliament Buildings, the Speaker of the National Assembly Hon Justin Muturi and the Speaker of the Senate Hon Ekwe Ethuro led members of Parliament and members of the Senate in signing up as HeForShe champions. 140 male members of parliament signed up as champions and pledged to step up for gender equality and empower our women and girls.
HeForShe is a solidarity movement for gender equality initiated by UN Women. It aims at engaging men and boys as agents of change for the achievement of gender equality and women’s rights, by encouraging them to take action against inequalities faced by women and girls.
The sign up and commitment to HeForShe was organized by Kenya Women Parliamentarians (KEWOPA) and was one of the events lined up to mark International Women’s Day. During the event, KEWOPA and UN Women Kenya mobilized male Members of Parliament to support the equal representation of our women in leadership positions.
Some of the members of Parliament and leaders who signed up as HeForShe champions are; Speaker of the Senate Hon Ekwe Ethuro, Majority Leader of Parliament Hon Aden Duale, Majority Leader of the Senate Hon Kithure Kindiki, Minority Chief Whip Hon Jakoyo Midiwo, Deputy Minority Chief Whip Hon Chris Wamalwa, Hon Chris Nakulei, Hon TJ Kajwang, Hon Simba Arati, Hon Justin Kamei, Hon Opiyo Wandai, Hon Robert Mbai, Hon Patrick Makau, Hon John Ole Sawi, Hon David Wafula, Hon Nderitu Waweru, Hon Malulu Injedndi, Hon Silvance Osele, Hon Benson Mbai, Hon Omar Mwinyi, Hon Benard Shiwali, Hon Benard Bett among others.
Hon John Mbadi the Member of Parliament for Gwasi acknowledged the significance of equal participation of women and men at all levels of the supremacy system in Kenya and emphasized that women empowerment is at the core of the sustainable growth goal plan.
Most of the male Members of Parliament whom we engaged during the mobilization event showed positive commitment to support the call for women and girls’ empowerment at all levels in their line of duty. Hon T J Kajwang the MP for Ruaraka constituency promised to spread the women and girls’ empowerment message in Homabay and beyond.
The Member of Parliament for Nambale Hon John Sakwa commended KEWOPA and UN Women for their advocacy on the empowerment of women and girls in Kenya and highlighted the need to support them at all levels.
By empowering women, we will have a stronger economy and a more progressive country.