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Monday, 27 Mar 2017 15:51 EATabdirahmancajab@gmail.com
The ODM nominated senator from Wajir County, Ms Halima Abdille, who recently joined the Jubilee Party, has trained her eyes on the women representative position being vacated by Ms Fatuma Ibrahim. The incumbent is vying for the Tarbaj constituency seat.
An able debater, Halima, who is popularly known as 'Lima', boasts of a successful stint in the senate where she has served since 2013. She is currently the vice chair of the Senate Education Committee, where she sponsored the Universities (Amendment) Bill in 2014 that requires the government to see the establishment of at least one university in every county.
She also introduced an amendment to the Basic Education Act on The National Council for Nomadic Education, which is mandated with easing challenges that impede children from marginal and ASAL region from accessing quality education as a significant number of them are out of school, in addition to other motions and statements before the house on matters related to education.
"I am one of the few female senators in the current house who have successfully introduced a Bill that was debated and passed into law," she told this writer at her senate office in Nairobi, exuding confidence that her law-making experience would help serve Wajir people in an elective position in the National Assembly.
A teacher by profession, Halima taught in various institutions in Wajir County before joining international humanitarian organisations from where she left to join politics. She has a long experience dealing with grassroots groups and is a well-recognised mobiliser, which is why ODM nominated her as a senator.
Halima says she joined the Jubilee Party because the Uhuru Kenyatta administration had brought tremendous development to the county despite the fact that Wajir was in the opposition during the government's tenure. She cites as example the ongoing tarmacking of the Mandera-Wajir and Wajir-Garissa roads.
In addition, she praised the government for giving the region two ambassadors, two permanent secretaries, one TSC commissioner and one IEBC commissioner, among other state jobs that she believes has helped the region get its share of top appointments. She also felt that Jubilee will form the next government.
The senator is fully supporting the Jubilee candidate for the Wajir governorship, Ambassador Mohamed Abdi Mohamud, saying that Mr Mohamud’s experience having been a member of parliament, cabinet minister and ambassador will enable him to deliver on his mandate.
She told this writer that Mr Mohamud was immensely popular with the voters and was a unifying voice in Wajir politics, and that his age and personal integrity would not allow him to engage in some of the corruption that has undermined some county governments.
In her manifesto, Halima puts prime focus on women empowerment, girl child education, promoting maternal health care including empowering midwives to better serve expectant mothers, youth empowerment and improving the county's educational standards, which she wants to be at par with the rest of Kenya.
She is all praise for devolution, which she characterised as a blessing to the people of the entire northern region that must be nurtured keenly. "It has boosted our developmental efforts including in maternal healthcare, roads, water and brought power closer to our people," she said.
She has assured the people of Wajir that all leaders from the county are trying to meet with the national government agencies to formulate a drought mitigation system. When this writer visited her office at KICC, she had just come out of one of the preparatory meetings for the objective.
"I'm familiar with the legislative procedures and will indeed be more effective in the lower house where most legislation is made," she said, expressing confidence that he experience over the last five years will help him trounce newcomers seeking the position.
In her campaign, the senator has sponsored a football tournament in one of the sub-counties as a means of marshaling youths and sensitizing them about unity, peace, and campaigning against drug use.
Abdirahman Rashid Farah is a contributing reporter for the Kenya Free Press based in Wajir County