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Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Political environment must be secure, level for all, says commission

National Gender and Equality Commission chairperson Winfred Lichuma appears before the IEBC Joint Select Committee at Parliament Buildings on July 21, 2015 /HEZRON NJOROGE
National Gender and Equality Commission chairperson Winfred Lichuma appears before the IEBC Joint Select Committee at Parliament Buildings on July 21, 2015 /HEZRON NJOROGE
The Gender and Equality Commission has said campaigns must be conducted in a civilised and secure environment for all.
Chairperson Winfred Lichuma urged the police to provide adequate security to women and persons living with disability, saying they are vulnerable to electoral violence.
“In the same vein, we urge the youth to refrain from being used to cause chaos during the campaign season,” Lichuma said during a press conference in Nairobi on Wednesday.
The commission expects voter education to be designed and delivered in a responsive and accessible manner to all special interest groups.
Lichuma told political parties to encourage special interest groups to register and participate in their activities, including running for elective positions.
She urged parties not to shortchange or underrate women or deny them tickets during the ongoing nominations, saying women have been mistreated before and denied tickets because they are perceived to be weak candidates who cannot secure victory if given an opportunity. The commission wants such stereotypes to end.
“Some have been given the tickets depending on who knows who. This is unacceptable. Parties should give every person a chance to compete freely and fairly,” Lichuma said.
She said the commission is aware of seats reserved for the youth, PLWD and women and wants them respected so that the positions do not end up with undeserving people.
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