Women want focused review process

June 3, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 3 – Women Organisations have called on Kenyans not to allow the Constitution review process be scuttled like it happened in the 2005 referendum.

Federation of Kenya Women Lawyers (FIDA) Kenya Executive Director Patriciah Nyaundi said on Wednesday that it would be a tragedy if the process collapsed again.

“You can sense that there is a feeling in this country, we are meant to heal but without a scar. There is a general assumption that yes you got hurt but grow out of it. But we are looking around and there are scabs all over the place,” Ms Nyaundi said.

“Can we afford to ignore them or will we pay a price that is even too high to contemplate?” she posed.

Speaking at the opening of a Kenya Gender Festival, Ms Nyaundi also said Kenya had to move on following the post election crisis and celebrate its diversity.

She said that it was time Kenyans stopped pretending that the country was faced with light issues.

 “It’s about time we stopped grossing over it and thinking that it can be addressed just by fine speech,” she said.

“And that is why as we begin celebrating and reflecting this gender festival with the understanding that it involves men, women, girls and boys, we as Kenyans must come together and appreciate that we all have a role to play in the healing of our nation.”

Ms Nyaundi accused the state of failure in guiding the healing process and said it was dealing with the matter like an “academic issue”.

“We are a diverse society and one of the things that we will seek to do during this festival is even as we celebrate our diversity there must be a commonness that we must all tap into to ensure that we can heal this country, ensure it has lasting peace and then move towards unity.”

Kenya Human Rights Executive Director Muthoni Wanyeki said the three day festival would be marked under the theme healing, peace building and unity.

“We decided to pick the theme of healing and reconciliation just because of everything that happened in the country last year,” Ms Wanyeki said.

“Big delegations have come from every province, so we just want to hear what are their experiences on the ground, what we can do to play our bit in terms of addressing the long term underlying issues that created the situation we saw last year.”


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