Twist As Esther Passaris Claims She Funded 'End Femicide' Protests
The bullish lawmaker was responding to a user on X, Tracy Ruo, who expressed delight at being among hundreds of enraged protesters who booed her at Jeevanjee Gardens
Nairobi Woman Representative Esther Passaris on Saturday, January 27 suggested she funded the march against femicide protests in silence to avoid drawing attention from her detractors.
The bullish lawmaker was responding to a user on X, Tracy Ruo, who expressed delight at being among hundreds of enraged protesters who booed her at Jeevanjee Gardens in the Central Business District (CBD) to the point that they prevented her from addressing the crowd.
Ruo had expressed her delight at how hostile the situation had turned for Passaris as the activists called her out as a means of sending a message to Kenyans tired of Public Relations (PR) shenanigans exuded by political leaders, especially during the protests.
Nairobi Women Representative Esther Passaris addresses the protests against femicide cases on January 27, 2024. /VIRAL TEA KE
"I really booed Esther Passaris! Best thing I’ve done in a long time.
"We really need to boo these politicians whenever we see them! We are tired of mediocrity!" the X user stated.
However, Passaris charged back with a response that worsened the outrage that she had already amassed online even before the march took place.
As though that was not enough, she claimed that she silently bankrolled the protests evidenced by the distribution of placards, bottled water and t-shirts courtesy of the National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF).
"You must have a really boring life if the best thing you have done in a long time was booing me.
"By the way. You might have worn a t-shirt, carried a placard and drank water financed by @NGAAF_KE for today’s march," she hit back.
Viral Tea was however unable to independently verify her claims. NGAAF is mandated to provide financial support to affirmative action groups for socioeconomic development towards the attainment of the national development agenda.
It is a semi-autonomous government agency (SAGA) under the Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs, in the State Department of Gender Affairs.
The Fund is one of the government initiatives anchored on the Vision 2030 development blueprint under the Social Pillar to address the plight of vulnerable groups by reducing poverty and inequality through enhanced access to financial facilities for socio-economic empowerment among women, youth and Persons with Disabilities.
However, Andrea Bohnstedt, a country risk analyst, responded by informing her that NGAAF as well as her salary were funded by taxpayers, stating "The people who booed you because they need you to work for that money. T-shirts and water won't fix femicide."
"Maybe you should follow my thread to see if I work or I don’t. Talking about my salary," Passaris retorted.
"I have never earned a penny as it all goes to the social needs of my county that are not met by the government and or exceed by far the funding from the government. I wake up every day to do God's work, but I am not God."
During the march, the lawmaker faced the wrath of the activists who accused her of being silent in the wake of recent femicide cases reported across the country.
"Where were you? Go home! Where were you!" The activists protested against the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) MP who had attempted to address them at Jevanjee Gardens.
The chants were followed by "Passaris must go" and "go back home" as she was blocked from addressing the crowd, forcing her to turn to a makeshift podium.
However, she did address a section of journalists on the sidelines as the activists presented their petition and asked her to forward it to Parliament.
Passaris, who defended the rude interruption, had indicated that she understood where the crowd was coming from and that their anger was justified, however noting that she had been pushing for protests actively on the sides.
Before being interrupted by the agitated crowd, Passaris called on President William Ruto to speak against the ongoing macabre killings witnessed in the country.
The protests attended by close to 10,000 women and men were staged in Nairobi and major towns countrywide in response to the increased systematic killing of women and girls in general across the country owing to their gender.