A woman’s life is a human life. Women are persons. Lately, these statements have seemingly lost their meaning to a wave of femicide. This Women’s Day, we are reminding ourselves of the validity of these statements. Magunga once commented that Kenya is a country that loves to hate its women. He outlined the murders or rather, the mysterious deaths of women that have occurred in recent years.
We have grown numb to the fact that Africans are communal in nature. This is why a pregnant woman would scream all night and be killed by her husband while the neighbors mind their business. We have accepted domestic violence as a norm.
This could be the reason why a human rights activist disappeared only to be found in a mortuary days later, with a botched abortion story and we shift our focus to her character. Even the church disowned their faithful owing to the abortion story.
Have we forgotten Bex Becky, mother to a six week old baby who died on January 1, 2018? Sharon Otieno, the pregnant sponsored girl, who was raped and brutally murdered? Carol Ngumbu, the mistress who was murdered alongside her ‘lover’?
It is because of deaths like these that activists, and civil society organizations are having the #TotalShutdownKe on Women’s Day, Friday 8th March. It will be a march in solidarity with women who have died mysteriously, or through domestic and gender based violence.
Join the movement this International Women’s Day as we #SayHerNameKe. These women are people’s daughters, wives, mothers, sisters, nieces and aunties. We should change the narrative from the victim’s character. We should instead demand that justice be served to Carol, Beryl, Sharon, Becky, Monica, and all who have died.
Friday 8th March, the women’s day march begins at 8 am, at Uhuru Park, Freedom Corner.