Post-election “cycle of violence” Tendencies in Kenya Worrying, Catholic Women Leader Says

Winnie Muthiga, board member of the World Union of Catholic Women’s Organisations (WUCWO) and Organizing Secretary of the Catholic Women Association (CWA) in Kenya. Credit: Moses Mpuria, Sheshi Visual Arts

A Kenyan board member of the World Union of Catholic Women’s Organisations (WUCWO) has expressed concern about the recurrence of post-election violence in Kenya. 

In an interview with ACI Africa, Winnie Muthiga challenged Kenyans to go beyond the tendency to offer criticism and taken action and urged voters to vote in “quality leaders” who can guarantee “good policies”.

"It is disappointing that every five years we have to go through a cycle of violence because of elections," Mrs. Muthiga said during the May 11 interview.

She added, "The other disappointing part is that we have more critics than actors; we are good at criticizing but we do not want to act."

"We have a lot of talented people, planners, economists, people who can do a good job as politicians if they vie for elective posts," Mrs. Muthiga told ACI Africa on the sidelines of the training of the national social correspondents in the workshop for Africa WUCWO member organizations.


Kenyan eligible voters are expected to go to the polls on August 9 to elect their President, Governors, Senators, Women representatives, Members of Parliament, and Members of County Assemblies (MCAs).

The East African nation has had a challenging road to the consolidation of its democracy. While the violence following the December 2007 poll that left more than 1,000 people dead and at least 350,000 displaced has widely been reported, the country has witnessed other post-election violence, including the 1992, 1997, 2013, and 2017.

In the interview with Africa, the WUCWO board member who also serves as the Organizing Secretary of the Catholic Women Association (CWA) in Kenya urged Kenyan voters to examine the background of those seeking elective posts.

"We Kenyans should assess those who are campaigning; we should have a checklist. If we want an MCA, what characteristics of an MCA do we want?" Mrs. Muthiga posed.

She added that Kenyan voters should also question the agenda of politicians who have become “too loud” yet they were dormant after they were previously elected into different political offices. She said, "We should question why some people have become too loud right now during the campaigns, yet he or she was not speaking before," Mrs. Muthiga said. 

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"We should ask: Is what he is saying correct or just saying for the sake of it?" the women Catholic leader further posed.  

It is important that Kenyans become critical of political aspirants because the nation is in need of quality leaders, she said, and emphasized, "What we need is quality, because what we are lacking is good quality leaders. Good quality is equal to good policies."

The Organizing Secretary of CWA in Kenya called on women who have the calling to serve as politicians to vie for political seats. 

"For the ladies, if one feels they have the urge and the calling to serve, they should go there," she said on the sidelines of the workshop that was held at the Little Daughters of St. Joseph in Nairobi, Kenya. 

Mrs. Muthiga went on to caution female aspirants against going into politics with “other expectations” apart from service to the people of God in Kenya.  


Women, she said, "should go into politics only to serve and not expect anything else. If they join politics with other expectations apart from serving, they will be disappointed." 

The WUCWO board member said if female political aspirants go into politics with the agenda to offer service, "they will be able to do a good job."

she urged Kenyan female political aspirants to strive for integrity and maintain good reputation in their respective political careers.

Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.