Discontent in MYWO over elections

Maendeleo Ya Wanawake Nairobi County chairlady Betty Miyandazi (centre) with other women leaders address the press last week on Friday. [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

Leadership wrangles are threatening to bring down Maendeleo ya Wanawake Organisation (MYWO).

Some members of the giant women group are crying foul ahead of the expected national elections in July.

The last election that saw Rahab Mwikali elected as the chairperson was conducted on July 12, 2014.

Splinter group led by Nairobi region chairperson Betty Martha claim new officials had been unprocedurally appointed through a boardroom meeting rather than allowing members to elect them.

Martha accused some national officials of sabotaging the process of election and kicking out those with dissenting views.

But the other group supporting the status quo dismissed Martha and other Nairobi region women leaders as impersonators saying they had been relieved of their duties through a formal process.

National Secretary Elizabeth Mayieka confirmed that there were no plans for elections in the near future even as she dismissed Martha as an imposter.

“There are no plans for elections. Those pushing for elections and claiming to be officials of the organisation were removed from office through AGM (Annual General Meeting),” Ms Mayieka told The Standard on phone.she added, “She (Martha) is not an official. She was removed and she ceases to be a representative of the organisation.”

Martha confirmed that she had been dismissed but claimed the process was not procedural and had thus vowed to remain in office.

She alleged that a number of other women leaders from Nairobi had also been hounded out through a shoddy process after they raised questions regarding the management of the organisation.

Among the ousted women leaders include Jeniffer Muthoni, the chairlady of Kiamaiko ward and Winny Kuria (chairperson of Embakasi West).

Despite having been notified that they had been stripped of their titles and responsibilities, the three flanked by dozen women claiming to be members of the organisation said they will seek redress from the Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) board and the ministry of Public service, Youth and Gender.

“The constitution demands that we have elections every five years. We shall not allow any plans to postpone elections and the scheme to appoint leaders rather than having them elected,” said Ms Martha.

She said there were plans to conduct a series of demonstrations to bring to attention the leadership wrangles at the organisation.

“We have reached out to members in all counties so that they can join us in demanding our democratic right to elect leaders of our choice. We cannot accept to be hounded out of office by individual leaders with their own interests,” Martha further said.