NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 7- A new poll released a day before the world marks the International Women\’s Day indicates that a majority of Kenyans would vote for a woman as president, if elections were held today.
The poll by Infotrak research released on Monday showed that 60 percent of voters are willing to vote in a woman president with half of the men interviewed also endorsing a woman.
"Both men and women are saying they would vote a woman President if the women came out," said Infotrak Chief Executive Angela Ambitho.
More respondents surveyed in the year 2011 (60 percent) than those surveyed in year 2010 (53 percent) mentioned they would vote for a woman president if elections were held today. More females (71 percent) than males (51 percent) surveyed in the year 2011 mentioned they would vote a woman president if elections were held today.
"This is to say that Kenyans are starting to look at options in terms of top leadership," noted Ms Ambitho.
Comparatively more of Kenyans surveyed in the year 2011 (72 percent) feel women are taking an active role in politics today as compared to those who mentioned the same in the year 2010 (64 percent) and 2008 (49 percent).
"There has been an increase in those who mentioned Ministerial position as the area that they feel women have taken active role in the year 2011 as compared to those who reported the same in the year 2010 with 29 percent and 20 percent respectively," said the report.
Gichugu MP Martha Karua has announced her bid to contest the presidency next year which will make her the second woman to register interest after Charity Ngilu\’s unsuccessful attempt in 1997.
The poll released a day to the 100th celebrations of the International Women\’s day however showed that a majority of Kenyans believe that the country is yet to achieve gender equality. Sixty percent of Kenyans agree that gender equality should be a top priority for Kenya.
Those interviewed want the State to invest more in education, employment, provision of health, gender based violence and housing.
"The number of Kenyans who agree that gender equality should be a top priority for Kenya continues to increases year after year," Ms Ambitho reiterated.
Comparatively, more respondents in year 2011 (66 percent) than year 2010 (64 percent) agree that gender equality should be a top priority for Kenya.
Awareness of FIDA as an organisation that works to boost gender equality in Kenya has increased with the years and remains number one among the organizations mentioned.
More Kenyans are aware of FIDA in 2011(81 percent) as an organisation that work to boost gender equality other organizations are Maendeleo ya Wanawake and Kenya Women Finance Trust.
The poll was conducted between February 17 and 18 with a sample of 1,500 respondents were interviewed.
Follow the author at https://twitter.com/waitheras