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County first ladies spearhead for their husbands re-election in 2017 elections

By Stanley Ongwae | May 15th 2016

County first ladies from Nyanza and Western have formed a campaign caucus to spearhead re-election of their husbands next year.

The group of 10 governors’ wives said they formed the Nyanza and Western Kenya First Ladies Caucus to help their husbands secure another term in office to complete the development projects they have initiated.

“We should allow them to finish all the good plans they have for their respective counties before we remove them from office. Most of the projects they have started are supposed to take more than five years to complete,” said Mrs Hellen Obado, the wife of Migori Governor Okoth Obado and the chair of the caucus.

Pressing needs

Mrs Obado has teamed up with Naomi Nyagarama (Nyamira), Elizabeth Ongwae (Kisii), Hellen Obado (Migori), Caroline Oparanya (Kakamega), Olivia Ranguma (Kisumu), Rosella Rasanga (Siaya), Judy Ojaamong (Busia), Margaret Lusaka (Bungoma), Rose Khaemba (Trans Nzoia) and Rosella Awiti (Homa Bay).

They converged at Nyamira Catholic Parish for a fund-raiser in aid of the construction of a convent last Sunday.

Mrs Obado said the governors have spent much of their time strategising on their counties’ most pressing needs and initiated projects that will not have been completed by the time Kenya goes to the polls next year. She said the delayed release of funds by the national government was slowing down projects in the counties and cautioned that the removal of the current governors may curtail these projects. According to Mrs Nyagarama, a five-year term is too short for the performance of a governor to be evaluated.

Mrs Ongwae said the current governors took much of their time to put up structures and deserve five more years to complete their agenda.

The Kisii first lady said sitting governors are better placed to steer development in their counties because they have mastered the areas of need. All they need, she said, is enough time to accomplish them.

Oparanya’s wife, Caroline, said electing new faces into the governors’ offices will be like introducing different development plans.

“Devolution is a new concept and all the 47 governors started from a point of no reference, yet we have seen the much they have done. Why dislodge them from completing the economic prosperity they have already spent a lot of time putting into existence?” said Mrs Awiti.

Gender Bill

The wives of Ranguma, Rasanga, Ojaamong, Lusaka and Khaemba said they will form a broader campaign unit in their bid to win re-election for their husbands.

The first ladies also hit out at MPs for shooting down the Gender Bill.

They said the provisions on the Gender Rule are enshrined in the constitution and warned those who rejected it that they will face the wrath of the voters in next year’s elections.

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