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๐†๐„๐๐ƒ๐„๐‘-๐๐€๐’๐„๐ƒ ๐•๐ˆ๐Ž๐‹๐„๐๐‚๐„ ๐ˆ๐ ๐Š๐„๐๐˜๐€๐ ๐๐Ž๐‹๐ˆ๐“๐ˆ๐‚๐’ ๐”๐๐ƒ๐„๐‘ ๐’๐‚๐‘๐”๐“๐ˆ๐๐˜

๐†๐„๐๐ƒ๐„๐‘-๐๐€๐’๐„๐ƒ ๐•๐ˆ๐Ž๐‹๐„๐๐‚๐„ ๐ˆ๐ ๐Š๐„๐๐˜๐€๐ ๐๐Ž๐‹๐ˆ๐“๐ˆ๐‚๐’ ๐”๐๐ƒ๐„๐‘ ๐’๐‚๐‘๐”๐“๐ˆ๐๐˜

Today, the Senate Committee on Justice, Legal Affairs, and Human Rights, chaired by Senator Wakili Hillary Sigei, questioned commissioners from the National Gender and Equality Commission (NGEC) in response to a statement by Senator Hamida Kibwana. This statement raised concerns about gender-based violence in the Kenyan political arena.

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Senator Kibwana cited the impeachment of Governor Kawira Mwangaza as a stark example of the problem, highlighting sexually threatening statements that circulated during the proceedings. She demanded the NGEC outline measures taken to investigate these gross violations of women's rights, hold perpetrators accountable, and support legal action. Kibwana further pressed for an explanation, stating: "State actions, if any, in place to encourage and support women to come forward and report incidences of emotional torment, threats and harassment".ย 

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She also sought recommendations for legislative interventions to strengthen the protection of women against gender-based violence and questioned strategies used by the NGEC asking, "State strategies and initiatives if any by the Ministry in raising awareness and preventing occurrences of such violations against women especially in political and government settings".

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NGEC Chairperson Dr. Joyce Mutinda acknowledged the severity of the issue and condemned the "scandalous statements and actions" directed at Governor Mwangaza. She underlined the commitment to accountability and outlined the NGEC's response, which included direct outreach to the governor and public statements criticizing the offensive remarks. Dr. Mutinda emphasized that the commission protects the rights of both men and women.

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Dr. Mutinda discussed the NGEC's wider work to combat gender-based violence in Kenya. She expressed concern about the rise in reports, including femicide and missing children. She highlighted ongoing legal cases, emphasizing the need for swift investigation and follow-through.

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Senator Sigei echoed these concerns, adding that men are also often victims of such violence but may suffer silently. He stressed the importance of actively including men in the broader conversation and efforts to address gender-based violence.