Meru: Women leaders urge Mwangaza’s supporters to stop using gender card to defend her

Wednesday, November 1st, 2023 18:42 | By
Meru County Women leaders led by Woman Representative Elizabeth Karambu during a press conference at the Bomas of Kenya on November 1, 2023. PHOTO/Barack Oduor

Women leaders from Meru County are backing the impeachment of embattled Meru Governor Kawira Mwangaza.

The women have asked leaders to stop using the gender agenda to defend Mwangaza who was impeached last week by the Meru County Assembly.

Speaking after a meeting at the Bomas of Kenya on Wednesday morning November 1, 2023, the women asserted that the impeachment of Mwangaza as Meru Governor was a result of her incompetence and inability to lead and not her gender.

Led by Meru Woman Representative Elizabeth Karambu, the leaders said Mwangaza’s predicament should be treated as a case of gross incompetence and leadership failure.

“The gender card is being played wrongly in Meru County even by national leaders because Kawira Mwangaza’s case is about corruption, incompetence and other ills,” Karambu said.

They implored the Senate to know that they respect women's leadership and have no personal vendetta against Kawira whose fate hangs with the Senate.

They also urged the Council of Governors (CoG) and national leaders not to interfere with the decisions of the County Assembly.

“We support Meru MCAs' decision to impeach Kawira Mwangaza over claims of embezzlement of public funds, contempt of court and assembly among other violations,” Karambu said.

The calls to have Kawira vacate office have also attracted Meru professional women like Halima Yussuf Mucheke who is the chairperson of the Board of Tourism Regulatory Authority and seasoned policy maker and scholar Felicity Nkirote Biriri.

They accused Mwangaza of victimising county employees from the previous government by sacking them while at the same time promoting nepotism in the county.

“Kawira Mwangaza has been using her position to sack employees of the government she inherited while employing her close family members,” Biriri said.

They also asked national leaders to be guided by the decision of the President and his deputy to allow Meru residents to solve their problems while claiming that they are correcting the mistakes made during the elections.

The Court of Appeal in Nyeri on Friday last week dealt a blow to Mwangaza after the three-judge bench dismissed her petition seeking to block her impeachment.

Justices Jamila Mohamed, Luka Kimaru and Aggrey Muchelule ruled that the court lacks jurisdiction to consider her petition.

“This court lacks jurisdiction in the first instance to consider the merits of the applicant’s application which sought conservatory orders before the impeachment process has run its constitutional and legal course,” reads the court documents.

Mwangaza was unanimously impeached by the Meru County Assembly with all 59 MCAs present voting in support of the motion tabled to remove her from office. 10 MCAs were absent.

They accused Mwangaza of misuse of public funds, gross misconduct, and contempt of the County Assembly and court among other charges.

Being the second time since she was impeached in 2022, her fate lies with the Senate which is expected to uphold or overturn the impeachment.

Impeached Meru Governor Kawira Mwangaza will now defend herself in the plenary after the Senators rejected a motion seeking to have a special committee formed.

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