By Dornata Mwiti
One would be forgiven for thinking that Anne Waiguru is the first woman to ever hold a public office in Kenya. And why not? The sheer slander and misogynistic insults being hurled her way is overwhelming and quite frankly, embarrassing. This needs to stop. Kenya has had its fair share of strong and controversial women in leadership.
Agnes Ndetei was a no nonsense leader who gave people sleepless nights during the Moi regime, the dreaded former Nairobi Judge Uniter Kidulla was no pushover and made life difficult for a lot of men and women who set foot in her courtroom. Dr Sally Kosgei, a Moi strategist, was untouchable back in the day. But none of the aforementioned women was ever disrespected the way Waiguru is being trashed.
Furthermore, Waiguru is hardly the first woman to be rumored to have affair. We have seen many high profile cases that involve live Presidential press conferences called to diffuse rumours and declare monogamy. The family courts and FIDA are awash with paternity lawsuits and child support cases involving many politicians and businessmen. But somehow, Waiguru’s case is billboard material and primetime political rally punchline! How many politicians get ordered by the courts to pay child support to kids fathered outside their marriages? Why can’t those cases be political punchlines?
Waiguru is a mother, a wife, a sister, an aunt and a daughter of a family that must be respected. Granted political limelight warrants scrutiny but that scrutiny must be done within the parameters of Justice and fairness. If she unethical or has committed a crime, prosecute her! Why not bring a censure motion to the House and deal with ethical issues accordingly? Her love life, should not be anybody’s business so long as she is within the confines of her privacy. The last time I checked, her love life was not part of her job description and should never be up for debate.
Men who revel on this are outrightly misogynistic and out of line. So what if she is ‘dating’ the President as alleged? What’s that got to do with the price of tea in China? If the 791 million shillings varnished, prosecute her or pass a vote of no confidence. In other words, there are other ways of dealing with the issue. Don’t give me that she-is-the-president’s-friend line because that can’t stop a determined house from passing a censure motion.
Lakini at this rate, Waiguru would be better served if she took a page from Mama Lucy Kibaki’s playbook. A thorough slap on the face can go long way in teaching some of these men a lesson.