New law good for women, say leaders
By Leonard Korir
Women from the pastoralist communities have lauded the promulgation of the new Constitution.
Led by women rights activist, Caroline Ramet, they said this marks a new dawn for women from the marginalised communities.
Ramet said men who dominate leadership have subjected Maasai women to extreme submissiveness.
However, she was fast to caution women from misusing privileges accorded to them by the new Constitution.
"This document only gives us opportunities to explore our potential in various positions but not as an excuse to disrespect our male counterparts," she added.
She said the new laws would liberate Maasai girls from being forced into early marriages and female genital mutilation.
"We are happy that the new law is sensitive to issues affecting the girl-child, especially by stating that every adult has the right to marry someone from the opposite sex under the consent of the parties," Ramet said.
Trans Mara West DC, Mbogo Mathioya, urged residents to read the new Constitution.
"The new Constitution is in force. Ignorance is not an excuse to breach the new the laws," said Mbogo.
He allayed fears among locals that the State would re-posses privately owned idle land.
"The Government has enough land and is not interested in your 10 or so acres," said the administrator.
He said the new Constitution was a gateway to wealth creation and urged locals to exploit new opportunities.
Maasai elder Solomon ole Naliki urged all communities living in the area to co-exist.
"If we are at peace, investors will come to our land," said Naliki.
How the new system of government worksThe promulgation of the new Constitution by President Kibaki on Friday has finally ushered in two levels of Government for improved access to public services and development.
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