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FEMALE PARTICIPATION IN KEY DECISION MAKING POSITIONS LOW – REPORT

Female representation in Parliament and in County County Executive Committees low

By Winnie Kabintie

Participation of women in key decision-making positions is still low compared to that of their male counterparts, with the latest statistics in the 2019 Economic Survey showing that the number has reduced compared to 2017.

According to the latest Economic Survey report by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics, the participation of women and men in key decision making through selected positions of leadership stood at 32 percent, for the selected sample, against the constitutional threshold of 33 percent.

The key decision-making positions sampled in the survey include the courts, parliament, county assemblies and county commissioners.

Notably, the proportion of women Diplomatic Corps reduced from 27.6 percent in 2017 to 23.2 percent in 2018 while the number of women appointed as County Commissioners and Deputy County Commissioners reduced from 36.1 percent and 14.9 percent in 2017 to 29.8 percent and 11.5 percent in 2018 respectively.

In the legislature, the proportion of women in both houses of Parliament remained below a third while that
of Members of County Assemblies increased marginally to 33.9 percent in 2018.

Increased women participation in  Appellate and High courts

The proportion of women judges at the Court of Appeal increased from 31.8 percent in 2017 to
36.8 percent in 2018. During the same period, the proportion of women judges at the High
Court marginally increased by 1.4 percentage points.

Counties fail in upholding gender rule on appointing members of County Executive Committee (CECs) 

According to the Economic Survey, out of a total of 440 number of CEC members in all counties, only 140 were female, representing a share of 31.8 percent.

Majority of the counties did not meet the constitutional threshold set out in section 197(1) of the Constitution of in the composition by sex of CEC members.  Nairobi City County had the lowest proportion with
no female CEC member, followed by Kitui and Tharaka-Nithi which had 12.5 and 22.2 per
cent respectively.

Notably, Kilifi, Nyeri and Kericho Counties had an equal number of male and female
CEC members.

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