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Equity Group Executive Director Mary Wamae scoops Women on Board Awards

According to WOBN, the network is committed to ensuring that the next generation of board members is more diverse and better balanced. This can only be achieved by creating a pipeline of board-ready women and facilitating those already in serving capacities in various board appointments to carry out their roles and responsibilities.

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Ministry of Interior and Coordination Principal Secretary State Department of Correctional Services Zeinab Hussein (left) presenting the Women on Board Awards 2021 to Equity Group Executive Director Mary Wamae(Right).PHOTO/Courtesy.

Equity Group Executive Director, Mary Wamae emerged as the overall winner of the 2021 Women on Board Awards at the Inaugural award ceremony held in Nairobi, Kenya by the Women on Board Network (WOBN).

The awards aim at recognizing exceptional individuals and organisations who exemplify outstanding leadership through promoting and impacting gender diversification and inclusion.

Mary was recognised for her efforts in demonstrating purpose, authenticity, resilience, innovation, and sustainable contribution in economic and social-impact initiatives that create and champion gender inclusion and women empowerment within Equity Group.

Speaking while accepting the award, Mary encouraged women corporate leaders to promote mentorship, impactful leadership, and authenticity in their places of work. “I have dedicated my life to serving a cause. I personally believe that I only get stronger if I uplift somebody else. You should create a legacy as you go up the career ladder. As leaders in this room and elsewhere, we need to be authentic; we need to be ourselves and should do things to the best of our ability. There are a lot of challenges and obstacles women face in their career journey, but regardless of these challenges, we need to remain focused on our goals,” she added.

Mary is involved in mentorship programmes for young ladies, career mentorship for professionals, sponsorships for bright but needy students and environmental conservation, among other interests.

In March 2020, she pioneered the launch of a staff empowerment program, Equity Inspire Programme (EQUIP) that aims to empower and mentor staff at Equity Group to advance in their careers, practice work-life balance and generally expose them to industry leaders and content that will help them network and grow in their careers.

While congratulating Mary on the recognition, the Chief Guest, Principal Secretary of State Department for Correctional Services, Ministry of Interior and Coordination, Zeinab A. Hussein urged and challenged the private sector to stay true to diversity.

“The government currently has over 30% of women in its boards. This is a positive indicator that we are headed in the right way in the public sector. I urge the Private sector to emulate and embrace what is currently happening in the government by appointing more women to their boards to equal or surpass government efforts,” said PS Zeinab.

“The Journey towards gender diversity and inclusion will only be successful if women work with their male counterparts to unlock more opportunities for themselves. We need men to be part of this journey and walk with us to realize it. Even as we continue to nurture the next generation of women on boards, we must make sure that such women bring their full value and make serious impact and influence,” added the PS.

According to WOBN, the network is committed to ensuring that the next generation of board members is more diverse and better balanced. This can only be achieved by creating a pipeline of board-ready women and facilitating those already in serving capacities in various board appointments to carry out their roles and responsibilities.

In 2012, gender representation in publicly listed companies was 12%, 18% in 2015, 21% in 2017 and now 36% in 2021 as per the data from the Kenya Institute Management Board Diversity and Inclusion Report 2021 that tracks Board diversity and inclusion progress over the last 9 years.

Before her current role, Mary served as the Group Company Secretary and Director of Corporate Strategy of Equity Group Holdings Plc. She has more than 28 years of experience in legal practice, strategy and banking and has led many impactful business transactions since beginning her service at the then Equity Building Society in 2004.

Equity Group Foundation was also recognized as the organization of the year scooping the 2nd runners up position during the event.  The Foundation was recognized for its efforts in supporting the vulnerable people by transforming their lives and livelihoods socially and economically by availing modern, inclusive financial services that maximize their opportunities.

The Women On Board Network Awards are mainly geared to celebrating the milestones achieved in attaining equity, equality as well as parity in the social economic status of women and youth.

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Atheists fault petition seeking to deregister society

Atheists in Kenya have protested a petition that they say seeks to create a notion that Kenya is a nation by and for believers in God only.

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President of the Atheists in Kenya Society, Harrison Mumia

Atheists in Kenya have protested a petition that they say seeks to create a notion that Kenya is a nation by and for believers in God only.

Former Juja MP, Dr Stephen Ndichu has moved to court seeking to have the Atheists in Kenya Society suspended on grounds that its continued existence is unconstitutional.

In a statement, the society’s president, Harrison Mumia says the petition is an assault on religious freedom and an insult to the diversity of the Kenyan people.

“We find the petition repugnant to a good conscience,” he stated adding that Dr Ndichu is a Christian fundamentalist who seems to harbour paranoid fantasies about the dangers of atheists existing in Kenya.

He further accused Dr Ndichu of seeing enemies where there is none and that the society was surprised, but not shocked as religion has historically inhibited progress.

He vowed that the society would do everything within its power to defend its right to remain a registered society and urged Kenyans to support fighting the petition.

On Sunday, the society said it will be writing to President William Ruto seeking an invitation to State House, just like the evangelical denominations.

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Uhuru Gardens ready for Madaraka Day fete, says PS Kibicho

The principal secretary said they would be visiting the gardens every Thursday until June 1 to ensure all loose ends are tied up properly, promising that the celebrations will be very colourful.

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Madaraka Day

This year’s national Madaraka Day celebrations at Uhuru Gardens in Nairobi County will be open to 30,000 people, up from 10,000 in 2021.

Permanent Secretary in the State Department for Interior, Dr Karanja Kibicho, said this follows the relaxation of COVID-19 containment measures.

“Children will also be allowed in on the celebrations this year, and we expect county celebrations to happen too,” the PS said while on an inspection tour of the venue.

The PS said the government decided to move the celebrations from the County rotational back to Nairobi because it will be the last event for the current administration before it exits office.

“Because of the significance of this particular Madaraka day, being the last for this regime, we decided to celebrate it at Uhuru Gardens to break the tradition of celebrating it in counties,”

He revealed that preparations were currently at 90 percent complete and expressed confidence that all will be set for the event as the country marks 59 years of self rule.

The principal secretary said they would be visiting the gardens every Thursday until June 1 to ensure all loose ends are tied up properly, promising that the celebrations will be very colourful.

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Queen Elizabeth mourns Kibaki as a great Statesman with commendable legacy

Kibaki will be buried at his home in Othaya, Nyeri County on Saturday.

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Queen Elizabeth II has mourned former President the late Mwai Kibaki eulogizing him as “a great statesman”.

“I was sorry to receive the news of the death of Mwai Kibaki. He had a lifelong record of service to the Kenyan people. It will be of deep sadness to your country to have lost a great statesman, but Kenya can take pride in the legacy of his leadership. I send you and the people of Kenya my condolences at this loss,” the message read.

The British High Commission further affirmed its close ties to Kenya and renewed its assurances to the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“The British High Commission avails itself of this opportunity to renew to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kenya the assurances of its highest consideration,” the High Commission said.

The late Kibaki passed away on 21 April 2022, aged 90.

President Uhuru, who issued a proclamation that he would be granted a state funeral with full civilian and military honours, announced his death.

Kibaki will be buried at his home in Othaya, Nyeri County on Saturday.

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