Women Criticise Nominations
The East African Standard (Nairobi)
13 February 2008
The League of Kenya Women Voters has asked political parties to
set rules governing the nomination of MPs and councillors to stem
the confusion and discontent that have accompanied the exercise.
The organisation's chairperson, Mrs Ida Odinga, on Tuesday
complained that the criteria of picking nominees was not clear.
Ida said personal interests had overshadowed the selection of
nominated MPs and councillors and called for transparency in the
"Dr Julia Ojiambo had to go to court to demand nomination on the
ticket of a party she offered as shelter to somebody else. There
is surely something wrong. People who worked for their parties are
being sidelined and new ones picked from nowhere for nominations.
It is not fair," she said.
Ida asked for an arrangement that involves the public or the party
in the process.
"Currently, it is not clear who is doing the nomination. Is it the
party's presidential candidate? Is it the chairman? Where do the
names of nominees come from? Who decides? We have to address these
issues, otherwise the whole idea is being subverted," she said.
Nominations, she said, were supposed to go to persons who had
rendered distinguished public service, or who had brought honour
to the Republic, or who had distinguished themselves in some field.
Nominated MPs were also supposed to represent disadvantaged and
special interest groups.
"If you look at the names parties have given out as nominees, it
is clear that the original concept is lost. If you look at the
many people struggling to be nominated just because they were
party chairmen who also lost their parliamentary seats, it gets
clearer that there are no rules anymore," Ida said.
Parties submitted the names of their nominees last week, sparking
Yesterday, Ida said the exercise was losing its purpose.
"I have decided to speak about this because many party supporters
are losing out to people hardly known to them. I am telling the
parties that we need rules and transparency in this exercise," she