BY KORIR JUMA,NAIROBI,25TH JAN,2022-Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru says it’s her hope and prayer that Presidential candidates will pick women running mates from Mt Kenya region ahead of the 2022 general elections.
Waiguru said it would be a great honour if she were chosen Deputy President William Ruto’s running mate, even as she acknowledged that the decision purely lies with the DP saying they will respect his choice.
“Hopefully the person will come from Mt Kenya. The region has the numbers to propel Ruto to the presidency. Now that we don’t have a presidential candidate, with the numbers it’s only fair that the position of running mate is reserved for Mt Kenya,” She said.
Waiguru who spoke during an interview with a local radio station however said she is at the moment focused on seeking re-election as Kirinyaga Governor.
“I have worked for the people of Kirinyaga, The people are happy with the projects we have initiated, but they were clear, that while they like the work I have done, they wouldn’t re-elect me unless I joined UDA,” She said.
Waiguru said UDA is the party of choice in the region. “The ground told me to join UDA. The region is very clear that the party is UDA and their Presidential candidate of choice is William Ruto. Any person who tells you otherwise is in denial.”
She expressed confidence that more women will come out and seek elective positions highlighting the need to bridge the gender gap in representation.
“Women need a level playing field to contest, harassment among women must end. UDA party recognizes that you can’t lead without representation from both gender,” She said.
She said UDA has put up mechanisms to empower women not to just contest but to support them in their campaigns saying DP Ruto is very passionate about women leaders and is at the forefront pushing as many as possible to seek elective posts.
“I believe there are women out there who are qualified but are afraid that the political terrain is rough and favours men. We can’t attain the two-third gender rule if we don’t offer ourselves for elections,” She said.
Waiguru said DP Ruto is best suited to continue with President Uhuru Kenyatta’s legacy adding that she is happier and feels more appreciated in UDA.
“For a long time, we kept pretending that things were okay with the Jubilee Party while we all knew they were not. The infighting was too much, you are in the same camp with people who you are supposed to be pushing the same agenda but they are the ones pulling you down,” She said.
The Governor says she is now battle-hardened, “I have grown as a politician, throw a missile at me and I will throw one at you, throw a barb and I face you head-on.”