Richard Onyonka, Kisii Senator, has attributed the troubles on leadership in Meru County to purely politics mixed with cultural ideologies against women.
According to him, the video played by Mwangaza’s defense team on Wednesday during the impeachment hearing was proof of his conclusion. He mentioned that the video displayed a revelation on the perception against women in Meru.
The Senator was referring to a video where an MP was verbally attacking the governor. Mpuru Aburi, Tigania East MP, was captured calling out the governor for not having children with her current husband.
The MP was seen making an address in Meru’s vernacular while rubbing a stick between his palms. Kawira Mwangaza was asked to translate the video to the court.
” He is saying he has given me 9 months to be pregnant and if that is not done, he will do it via what he is holding,” said Kawira before shedding tears.
Onyonka further stated that the video sparked sympathy among the senators and Kenyans. It is because of this, that the senators voted in favor of the governor.
According to him, the video was a tiebreaker which gave the impeachment trial an alternative trajectory. He mentioned that the MCAs had a tangible case against Mwangaza, but the video sparked sympathy.
” Not that she was completely innocent [but] I think that sympathy made the men in the Senate begin to ask ourselves how do you distinguish the abuses she received which were sexually based and you telling me that she’s just a bad manager,” he said
“I think the team that was against Mwangaza lost because Meru’s problem was a mix of the cultural hate on the woman, not that all women in Meru hate women but there’s that thing, ” he added.
Political Issues in Meru
In Onyonka’s view, the political issues facing Meru can be solved amicably without reaching the national level.
“I think the leadership needs to get back to the drawing board. The MCAs did their job though it looked like they were the hatchet men but we need to explain what this democracy thing is all about in our country, how are our counties supposed to be managed,” he stated.
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This has marked the second time that Kawira Mwangaza has faced impeachment and survived. Out of all the seven charges brought against her by the Meru County assembly, the 47 Senators could not find any that would stick.
The Governor was accused of misappropriating county resources, nepotism and unethical practices, bullying and vilifying other leaders, usurping her statutory powers, contempt of court, illegally naming a public road after her husband and contempt of the Meru County Assembly.
Kawira Mwangaza is the first female governor in Meru County. According to Onyonka’s statement, there are a few more strides the county has to make to address the cultural ideologies against women.