The election of Anne Mwangi Mvurya as the first female chair of the University of Nairobi Student Association (UNSA) continues to excite Kenyans both offline and online.
Miss Mvurya prevailed in the hotly contested election to emerge victorious after scooping 24 votes against Samuel Ayoma’s eight while Ertiman Oile got 4.
She will replace Antony Manyara who was the first to be elected under the Universities Amendment Bill signed by President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2016. The exercise was conducted by an electoral college bringing together representatives from the university’s 12 campuses and the results released on Sunday.
Under the new law, a member of the student council is elected for a one-year term and eligible for re-election for another one year.
The law was enacted partly to cure a lacuna in the previous regime, which saw Embakasi East MP Babu Owino serve as chairman of Sonu, UNSA’s precursor, for nearly a decade.
Miss Mvurya, a law student, is a daughter to Kwale Governor Salim Mvurya, who she said in a previous interview is the inspiration behind her entry into politics.
“As always girls are close with their dads and we would watch political news and debates together and later share our opinions. Slowly by slowly my interest grew,” said Miss Mvurya, the last born in a family of two.
She, however, said she was a born leader and served as head girl in both primary and secondary schools.
“Ever since I was a young child, I have always loved politics and involved myself in the game from time to time, I have been a student leader countable times and I am just left with a small piece of cake to eat. In fact, now that I am the only lady eyeing this position, it makes it even easier for me to win,” she added.
Before her election to lead UNSA, she led a female students’ welfare association.
Among those who congratulated her following her historic win are Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko, his Kirinyaga counterpart Anne Waiguru and the university’s vice chancellor Prof Peter Mbithi.
“Nairobi beautification goes on. Compliments to my sister & friend
@MwangiMvurya for being elected as the Chair of @uonbi Students Association (UNSA). Ann becomes the 1st female student with beauty & brains in the history of students leadership to be elected in this position,” Sonko tweeted after hosting her to a reception at City Hall.
On her part, Waiguru tweeted Monday morning: “Congratulations Anne Mwangi Mvurya for your historic win as the first woman leader of the UON Student Association. Confirms what we’ve always known; women CAN and WILL make great leaders. Make us proud!
“Congratulations! Anne Mwangi becomes the first University of Nairobi (female) Student Leader, after nearly 50 years in existence. SONU has since been rebranded to UNSA. I am happy to be part of this transformation that is taking place at the University of Nairobi. Congratulations Anne Mwangi, UNSA Boss,” Prof Mbithi tweeted on Sunday.
Winning student elections is no mean feat for female students given the fact that they are replete with underhand tactics, hooliganism and huge war chests.
One of the contestants in this year’s election, for instance, claimed he had set aside Ksh 4 million for his campaign kitty.