WATCH: Kenyan advocate slammed over slandering rape comments

2016-11-23 13:24
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Nairobi – A Kenyan High Court advocate has drawn heavy criticism from a rights group after he made slandering rape comments towards a female political rival on a popular national television show.

"You are so beautiful; everybody wants to rape Pasaris," Advocate Miguna Miguna said to politician Esther Pasaris during a show hosted by a former CNN correspondent, Jeff Koinange.

Miguna also made disparaging comments about Pasaris’s looks, and openly mocked her: “A woman who has absolutely no integrity. A socialite bimbo whose only claim to fame is because she is looking for billionaire sponsors [sugar daddies].”

Watch the video below posted on You Tube.

Miguna, is a former aide to opposition leader Raila Odinga. He plans to run for governor of Nairobi next year. Pasaris is also eyeing the same seat.

Miguna claimed the confrontation occurred after Pasaris called him a rapist during a commercial break.

According to Human Rights Watch (HRW) his comments raised a lot of concern about the treatment of women in the east African country.

The group said that "trivilialising sexual abuse" was "no entertainment". 

Women in Kenya faced widespread violence, with the 2014 Kenya Demographic and Healthy Survey indicating that 45% of women aged between 15-49 had experienced physical violence and 14% had experienced sexual violence. The same survey showed high rates of acceptance of wife beating.

HRW said that the media had a role to play in combatting gender stereotypes that discriminated against women and promote respect for women.

"It is outrageous that Miguna, who aspires to be a political leader who will bear responsibility for addressing violence against women, would publicly joke about the rape of the woman running against him.

"It is also outrageous that he was able to do so on air without being challenged by the show’s host. His comments reinforce a culture of misogyny and abuse often directed toward female candidates," HRW said.

Kenya is set to hold general elections next year in August.

HRW said it was important for the Kenyan government to "take necessary measures to ensure that women can participate freely as voters and aspirants".

The group said that women should be free from violence and intimidation.

"Miguna owes Kenyans an apology. A stronger response from the government condemning intimidation of women political aspirants is needed," HRW said. 

Social media reaction

Read more on:    hrw  |  ktn  |  kenya 2017 election  |  miguna miguna  |  kenya  |  east africa

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