Bomet County Woman representative in the National Assembly has on Friday urged women in the region to vie for more elective leadership positions in the next general election.

While talking at a women’s meeting held at St. Bhakita Conference Hall in Bomet Town, Mrs. Cecilia Ngetich said it was sad to note that there were misconceptions in the society that women should not vie for positions other than that of the Woman Rep that had been touted as “given to the women”.

“There is no elective seat that women are restricted from vying for even that of the president but as of now we are supporting the current seating president for re-election but what I am telling you is to vie for all the other posts including the MCA, MP, Governor and Senate.” She urged the women.

The meeting organized by the National Democratic Institute in conjunction with Kenya Women Parliamentary Association was attended by over 100 women leaders from all Bomet County.

“The purpose of calling these women to this meeting is that they may reach out to the women they are leading in their respective areas and tell them there is nothing wrong with vying for a leadership position,” Mrs. Ngetich told journalists at the sidelines of the meeting.

She added that the constitution also stipulated in the 2/3 gender rule that no gender shall hold more than two thirds of the leadership positions in every sector including political leadership and hence more women should come up to compete for the elective posts.

Women aspirants preparing for the next poll including former finance director at the county government of Bomet Ms. Rose Chepkirui Kositany raised the challenges that women aspirants face.

Ms. Kositany who will be vying for the position of MP in Bomet East constituency said financial constraint was the biggest challenge to new aspirants.

Cultural and traditional issues were also cited as a reason why more women shied from vying for elective post.

“In the African society we are shaped up to know that leadership is for men and that is why even in families it is the men who owns property and even entitled to inherit family property.” Mrs. Hellen Mutai a business woman from Sotik who will be vying for Chemagel ward MCAs position said.

She pointed out that this situation also restricts the resources available to women for use in political activities and seeking other leadership positions which requires lobbying.

Other challenges that were raised at the meeting were the use of propaganda by men to tarnish the character of women aspirants, the role of other women who were said not to like their own was also raised as well as the matter of time where women were said to be committed much in taking care of family concerns which left them with little time to pursue political interests.