NAIROBI, Kenya, October 26 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has led Kenyans in mourning the death of former Maendeleo Ya Wanawake Organisation Chairperson Jane Kiano, who succumbed to lung cancer Thursday night at the Nairobi Hospital where she was undergoing treatment.
He said the late Kiano, 74, was a relentless champion of human rights and always stood for justice.
“She played an important role in advancing women rights and justice in the country,” reads a section of his statement.
On his part, Deputy President William Ruto described her as an exceptional leader, who gallantly led the Maendeleo ya Wanawake Organisation.
The Deputy President said the late Kiano was a champion of women’s rights and a proponent of gender equality.
He has specifically noted her efforts in empowering girls’ education and in women mobilisation to build sustainable livelihoods and safeguard their welfare.
“The former Maendeleo Ya Wanawake Organisation Chairperson was a gallant campaigner of women’s rights and empowerment,” he said.
Born in Tumu Tumu, Nyeri, Jane Kiano trained as a teacher before relocating to Nairobi.
She gave 40 years of her life to voluntary public service and leadership in the women’s movement serving in various national and international leadership positions.
Most notably, she was Maendeleo Ya Wanawake Organisation National Chairperson (1971–1984) and National Council of Women of Kenya Chairperson (1999-2003).
She was the current Patron of the Maendeleo Ya Wanawake Organisation alongside Mama Ngina Kenyatta.
She also served as Alliance Francaise President (1982-2013) and was Nairobi City Commission Deputy Chairperson (1988–1992).