, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 4 – The Truth Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC) has expressed optimism that donors will now fund its activities following the exit of the controversy-plagued chairman Bethuel Kiplagat.
The commission\’s vice chairperson Tecla Namachanja said on Thursday that the commission was now reaching out to various stakeholders to support them.
She further stated that the commission would be able to meet the November 2011 deadline set for it to finish its work.
"As I said, this only happened recently and we are making outreach. As you have seen we made an outreach to women MPs and they have responded," she said. "Let us give it time and I am hoping that they will come with around and support the Commission."
Mrs Namachanja was speaking during a meeting with the Kenya Women Parliamentarian Association (KEWOPA) where she pointed out that the credibility of TJRC was still intact.
"The challenge that we faced was around the allegations against the chairman and now we have a process that has been put in place, he has honourably agreed to step aside to allow for investigations," she explained.
"I do not think we need to talk about the issue of credibility as of now."
The commission also emphasised on the need for civic education to be carried out to sensitise people on the benefits of fully participating in its programmes.
This comes after a revelation that only few women participated in the statement taking exercise which the TJRC was undertaking across the country.
According to Chief Executive Officer Patricia Nyaundi, it is only by fully participating in the process that reconciliation can be achieved.
"The statements that we have collected from women range very low. It is about 10 percent and the highest in Kisumu is about 40 percent so that we a can say that the statements on average collected from women is about 20 percent," she said. "The women have raised a number of challenges and we think that we have not done enough in terms of civic education."
She further observed that women and children were the most affected by injustices and stressed the need for them to participate in the reconciliation processes.
"When their husbands and sons are arrested because of their political positions, how does this affect them as wives and daughters?" she posed.
"The law that created us requires us that we come up with a complete and accurate record. Unless women’s\’ perspectives of all these violations are documented, then we will not have the complete truth," she stated.
The commission got fresh impetus after American law professor Ronald Slye who had earlier indicated he was quitting citing lack of support from the government and the unresolved allegations against the commission\’s chairman returned after his exit.