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Kilifi women stand by Jumwa, urge ODM to rescind expulsion decision

Kilifi nominated senator Christine Zawadi, Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa and Kilifi Woman Representative Getrude Mbeyu during International Women's Day celebrations at Ganze trading centre on March 8, 2019. /ELIAS YAA
Kilifi nominated senator Christine Zawadi, Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa and Kilifi Woman Representative Getrude Mbeyu during International Women's Day celebrations at Ganze trading centre on March 8, 2019. /ELIAS YAA

A group of women from Kilifi county on Friday expressed their displeasure over Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa's expulsion from ODM.

The county celebrated International Women's Day at Ganze trading centre.

Nominated senator Christine Zawadi said Jumwa's expulsion was an affront to women.

“I am not a member of ODM, but I believe Jumwa was expelled because of her gender. This clearly demonstrates how women are mistreated in the country. If Jumwa went against the Constitution of the party, I believe there are other internal mechanisms that could have been used to address the matter,” she said.

Zawadi urged ODM to reverse the decision to remove Jumwa from the party.

The function was also attended by Governor Amason Kingi, Jumwa, Ganze MP Teddy Mwambire, Kilifi South's Ken Chonga and MCAs from the county.

Woman representative Getrude Mbeyu said the National Assembly has few female MPs and the expulsion of Jumwa would derail efforts to fight for the rights of women.

“We have tried to rally members to pass the Gender Bill without success. This shows clearly the challenge in numbers we have as women in the assembly. ODM should allow Jumwa to enjoy the rights to association and freedom of speech as enshrined in the Constitution. There are other ways the issue can be resolved,” she said.

Former Mombasa Deputy Governor Hazel Katana said it's time for the region to come together and defend Jumwa.

“As we celebrate Women’s Day today, we need to claim our rightful position in the politics of this country. We need to stand up and say no to such treatment. Why did ODM choose to expel only Jumwa and forgive Dori? This shows how women are disregarded in this country.

Magarini MCA Elina Mbaru said Jumwa delivered for ODM and her ouster is ill advised.

Mbaru said women from the county will not sit down and watch the party mistreat Jumwa.

“We will walk with Jumwa even to the shadow of death. She may have her own flaws, but she is a leader elected by thousands of people. It is not fair for a few people to sit and decide for the people of Malindi,” she said.

Mbaru urged Kingi, who is the Kilifi county ODM chairman, to intervene.