By Denis Omwange

KITUI Governor Charity Ngilu flew out of the country yesterday to join a high powered International Election Observation Mission 2019 to observe Nigeria’s Presidential and National Assembly Elections

The 38- member group will serve under the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute and is led by retired Botswana President Mr Festus Mogae.

Mogae was elected President of the Republic of Botswana for two five-year terms from 1998 to 2008. In 2015, President Mogae was appointed to head the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) tasked with monitoring the implementation of the South Sudan peace agreement.

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Governor Ngilu has been a public servant for more than 27 years: as Member of Parliament for Kitui Central Constituency from 1992 to 2013, Minister and Cabinet Secretary in the National Government of Kenya from 2002 to 2015. Governor Ngilu is also the Party Leader of the National Rainbow Coalition (NARC).

Governor Ngilu was first elected to parliament in 1992, and was elected the leader of the Social Democratic Party, which was then in opposition. She made history five years later when she became the first woman to run for president in Kenya.

Governor Ngilu has a passion for transformative leadership and women’s empowerment in leadership.

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Other leaders in the mission include former Latvian President Vaira Vike Freiberga, was elected in 1999 by the Parliament for a four-year term and was re-elected for a second term in 2003, former US Ambassador to Kenya Johnnie Carson, who is a Senior Advisor at the United States Institute
of Peace since June 2013, former Gambian Vice President Fatoumata Tambajang , IRI’s Vice Chairman Mr Randy Scheunemann and Mr Derek Mitchell, NDI’s third president.

Governor Ngilu is the only political leader from Kenya to participate in this International Mission. It is indeed an honor to Kenya and Kitui County for the NDI and IRI to nominate her.