The first woman Deputy Speaker of the Senate of Kenya, Hon. Prof. Margaret Jepkoech Kamar will be the Chairperson for the Young African Women Congress (YAWC) 2022, East African Session which is set to take place from 22nd to 25th May 2022 at the Kenya School of Government, Lower Kabete, Nairobi under the theme, “Network to Empower: Refuelling a Continent on the Rise.”

This was made known after the YAWC team led by the YAWC Network Council Chair, Mr. Daniel Osei Tuffuor, paid a courtesy call on her at the parliament building in Nairobi, Kenya. She expressed her delight for the honour and pledged her utmost effort to ensure that the congress begins and ends successfully.

Organisers of the congress, sharing the reason for the choice of Hon. Prof. Kamar, alluded to her rich experience as a politician, professor and gender advocate. Her rise through the ranks to the first female Deputy Speaker of the Senate of Kenya cannot be ignored.

Prof. Kamar served five years as a member of the East African Legislative Assembly and was elected to serve five years as Member of Parliament in the Kenya National Assembly, representing Eldoret East Constituency.  While in the National Assembly, she served two and half years as the first Kenyan woman in the Speaker’s Panel, (Temporary Speaker), while also serving at the same time as a member of the Budget, House Procedures and Standing Orders Committees.

She was then appointed to the post of Assistant Minister in the Ministry of Environment and Mineral Resources where she served for one year before being appointed Minister for Higher Education, Science and Technology, where she served for one and a half years.

On the international front, she represented the Kenya National Assembly in the African, Caribbean and Pacific – European Union, Joint Parliamentary Assembly (ACP-EU JPA) where she chaired The Social Committee covering environmental matters including climate change and sustainable development.

She was a Professor of Soil Science at the Moi University, Eldoret, specialising in Soil and Water Conservation, with lecturing experience of over twenty years. She is a seasoned administrator having served as University Campus Principal for five years and University Vice Chancellor for three years.

Hon. Prof. Kamar’s position as a policy maker and legislator, and a professor who engages students who are directly or indirectly involved with grassroots engagements regarding governments’ decisions and directives, makes her an excellent choice for the Chairperson at the congress. She brings in a lot of insight and experience which will be beneficial to the conversations that will emerge at the congress.

YAWC  is open to all women of African descent who have the drive to be part of the transformational journey of the continent. The congress is an annual event that brings these minds together to shape the drive in the right direction.