Uhuru fetes Ida, 26 other women as ‘Trailblazers’

Irene Githinji @gitshee

Ida Odinga, wife of former Prime Minister Raila Odinga, was among the women celebrated by President Uhuru Kenyatta as a Trailblazer yesterday.

Uhuru launched the Trailblazers Movement during the unveiling of Phoebe Asiyo’s memoir ‘It is Possible: An African Woman Speaks’ at State House, Nairobi.

Also honoured were Uhuru’s half-sister, the late Margaret Wambui, the first woman mayor of Nairobi and Nyiva Mwendwa, the first Kenyan woman Cabinet minister, who were decorated with the Elder of the Golden Heart (EGH) medal, the highest civilian award.

The 27 women were recognised as distinguished heroines who have left significant footprints in the political, social and economic landscape of the country.

President Uhuru Kenyatta with the women trailblazers at State House, Nairobi, yesterday. He conveys the Elder of the Golden Heart award to Ida Odinga. Photo/PSCU

“These women are lauded for championing equality and playing big roles in encouraging others,” said the President. He made the remarks at State House, Nairobi, when he urged more women to document their history to benefit future generations.

He directed Education Cabinet secretary Amina Mohamed to intervene in this process and assist more women who wish to write their memoirs for purposes of telling their history but lack the capacity.

The President said progress has been made in empowering women, adding that there is need to document their contribution in shaping the history of the country.

“Writing memoirs is important but a challenge to many. Many people are dying with a lot of history in their heads and this is not useful to future generations or the country,” said Uhuru.

Asiyo, Dr Julia Ojiambo, Beth Mugo, Lady Justice Joyce Aluoch, Zipporah Kittony, Prof Wanjiku Kabira, Edah Gachukia, Honorine Kiplagat, Jane Kiano, retired Lady Justice Effie Owuor, Prof Maria Nzomo, Prof Leah Marangu, Muthoni Likimani and Mary Okello were feted with the Order of the Burning Spear (EBS) award for their various achievements.

The Moran of the Burning Spear included Dr Evangeline Muli, Dr Jeniffer Riria, Wilkister Onsando, Joan Mjomba, Jael Mbogo and Teresia Shitakha. Terry Kantai, Kamla Sikand, Rukia Subow and Rose Waruhiu were awarded the Order of the Grand Warrior. The President directed the Ministry of Public Service to make the Women Trailblazers Award an annual event.

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