NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 2 – President Uhuru Kenyatta says the government intends to declare a day in which Kenyans can honour and celebrate the country’s women trailblazers for their outstanding achievements and contribution to the society.
Speaking during the memorial service in honour of former Maendeleo ya Wanawake Chairperson Jane Kiano, the Head of State said the nation will not forget the sacrifices she made.
“She fought for women, not because she was seeking glory or wealth, but because it was the right thing to do. So today we celebrate many other women, who under her tutelage have become great leaders in this country.”
“A time has come for us to recognise the women who have made great contribution to this country. We will no longer wait until they pass on to celebrate them. This is why we are running the trailblazer program to honour such women,” he said.
The Head of State said he always referred to the late Kiano as a mother, sister and friend because they shared and talked on almost any issue.
“Mum, we shall miss you, we shall treasure the moments we shared together and we shall never forget the sacrifices you made for some of us. May the Almighty God rest your soul in eternal peace,” he said in his final salute.
Deputy President William Ruto on his part said Kiano was an exceptional leader and a gallant campaigner.
“She built the biggest ever women movement in Africa. She leaves behind women leaders that she mentored and inspired so we truly have something to celebrate about her contribution to our nation,” Ruto stated.
Opposition leader Raila Odinga eulogised Kiano as a strong advocate of women’s rights.
“The women who have done things in the field of academia, in the field of sports, and in the field of social welfare, they need to be recognised by us, we should give them the kind of recognition that they need to have,” the former PM said.
Kiano died last month at the Nairobi Hospital after a battle with lung cancer. She left behind two daughters. Her husband Dr Julius Kiano died 15 years ago.