‘RaRua’ it is! Raila Odinga picks Martha Karua as running mate
On Monday, Azimio la Umoja One Kenya presidential flag bearer Raila Odinga named Narc-Kenya leader Martha Karua as his running mate and promised her the slot of Constititutional Affairs Cabinet Secretary should they form the government.
“I needed a true Joshua on my corner, one who will not be a turn coat. After along search and reflection, together with consultation, I have arrived at the decision that the holder of this position must be a woman,” Mr Odinga said.
He added: “The office of the DP is a workshop which cannot compete with the presidency. The holder must be a co-worker, and she must be a woman.
He was speaking at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre, where he praised Ms Karua for her zeal and human rights record.
After reviewing the committee report I have nominated Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka as the Chief Cabinet Secretary to help me form the Azimio government.
“I also nominate Kenneth Marende as the speaker of the senate. I also nominate Oparanya as CS for Treasury,” he said.
Mr Odinga also proposed Mr Peter Munya as CS Agriculture and Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho as CS for lands, to deal with the land issues especially at the coast.
In her acceptance speech, Ms Karua said she was happy to deputize Mr. Odinga, congratulating her other running mates hopefuls.
“I am deeply honored by the decision to nominate me as the deputy president of the coalition. i am aware of the responsibility and this nomination is a collective honour that cannot be left f me alone to savor. It is personal journey but also a national journey,” she said.
She added; “We are going to do more in the area of social-economic rights. Together, we can finally bring to life the dreams deferred.” she said.
M Karua’s choice has split Azimio which saw Wiper Kenya party leader Kalonzo Musyoka bolt out.
“I wish Raila’s running mate Martha Karua well. We have agreed to go our separate ways. I told Raila the decision to pick Karua will be met with a lot of opposition. OKA will be alone and very soon Wiper will be launching its own manifesto,” he said.
Ms Karua, who joined the Azimio team in March has been crisscrossing the country drumming up support for Mr Odinga.
“She has everything going for her,” Mr Murathe said adding that Ms Karua will fight for the Mt Kenya community and serve their interests.
“When the community feels insecure now that they don’t have a candidate, they need a fighter next to Jakom to take care of their interests.”
He described Ms Karua as principled.
“She will be able to insulate Jakom and will not take nonsense.
“Those who think they will go to distract Jakom, they will have to pass through her first.”
Martha Wangari Karua is a former long-standing member of parliament for Gichugu Constituency and an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya. She was Minister for Justice until resigning from that position in April 2009. Karua has consistently fought for the protection of women’s rights and improvements to the democratic process.
A lawyer by profession, Ms Karua graduated from the University of Nairobi in 1980 and the Kenya School of Law in 1981.
She worked as a magistrate before leaving to start her law firm and was instrumental in the treason trial of former Subukia MP Koigi Wamwere.
At the risk of being blacklisted by the Kanu regime, she defended several human rights activists.
Ms Karua would later plunge into politics and was elected MP for Gichugu constituency in 1992 and became the Democratic Party’s legal affairs secretary in 1993.
She served as minister for Water Resources Management and Development in the late President Mwai Kibaki’s administration between 2003 and 2008 before she was appointed minister for Justice, National Cohesion and Constitutional Affairs, where she served until April 6, 2009, when she resigned from the government.
She is celebrated for championing the Water Act 2002, which accelerated the pace of water reforms and improved related services. She is also known for the fight for democracy, the second liberation and constitutional change.
The daughter of Jackson Karua and his wife Josephine Wanjiru, Martha Karua was born on 22 September 1957 in Kirinyaga District in the Central Province of Kenya. Brought up in the village of Kimunye in the, she is the second child in a family of eight, four girls and four boys.
She attended Mugumo primary school, Kabare Girls Boarding School, St Michael’s boarding school Keruguya. She attended Kiburia Girls Secondary School, Ngiriambu Girl’s secondary school, and Karoti Girl’s secondary schools where she passed her East African School Certificate at Karoti Girls High School in [[Kirinyaga County. She then attended Nairobi Girl’s secondary school for A levels. She studied law at the University of Nairobi from 1977 to 1980. Between 1980 and 1981 she was enrolled at the Kenya School of Law for the statutory postgraduate law course that is a prerequisite to admission to the Kenyan roll of advocates and licensing to practice law in Kenya.