Martha Karua is a mother of two young adults, a member of parliament for Gichugu and is currently running for president of Kenya under a Narc Kenya seat.
A force to reckon with, Martha has been on the fore front of the fight for the rights of Kenyans and will not rest until she ensures the needs of Kenyans are put first and we have systems that are functional and responsive to the needs of the Kenyans.
She also pounds up a mean dish of â€œmukimo”
We had a few questions for her and this is what she had to say :-
1. What was your first phone?
My first phone was an Alcatel handed down to me from my sister after she upgraded to another one because she figured it had taken me too long to get myself one; goes without saying that she was the one I was in communication with the most in the beginning.
2. Who/What inspired you to do what you do now?
My grandmother was a key influence. She was an uneducated woman who despite that fact claimed her space. She spoke out about right to choice for everyone and self dignity; there was an instance where she went to stand up for another woman who was being abused in her own home in the village she lived in; she is my hero. My mother and father were also a big influence since they supported all my endeavors; I strive to do the same with my children.
3. If you were to change jobs, what profession would you get into?
I would be a teacher. I enjoy speaking to people and having them see a different side to things, I still do this every time I speak to people. Knowing that I have been a positive influence in someoneâ€™s life is the greatest feeling and teaching does that. Knowledge is, after all, power.
4.If you could meet anyone dead or alive, who would it be and what would you
say to them?
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the president of Liberia; to have an empowering discourse with her and ask her to give me her views on her journey to presidency.
5. What is the longest you have gone without a shower?
2 days â€“ Before the announcement of the election results, James Orengo (ODM), myself (PNU) and a few other people had to go through and scrutinize each and every file that came from all the constituencies to verify the tallies and we could not leave until this was done. We stayed put, keeping watch; for two days, I waited for the presidential tally to be completed.
6. If I came to your home and looked inside the refrigerator, what would I
Fruits, vegetables and yoghurt, which I really like.
7. Why isn’t the number 11 pronounced onety one?
Itâ€™s a mysterious twang in mathematics.
8. What is your favourite book & movie?
Several actually: Anna Karenina, Things Fall Apart, The River Between and The Da Vinci Code
And my favourite movie is The Sound Of Music and even though XYZ is not a movie, I like it; they always have me in stitches.
9. If you were deserted on an abandoned island what 5 things would you want
1. A modem with unlimited internet so that I could tweet and be connected to the rest of the world
2. The Kenyan constitution because it is still being implemented
3. The Holy Bible because I need constant spiritual guidance and because it was the first constitution between man and God
4. My iPod so I could listen to all my favorite music
5. And definitely my Zumba workout video because I really love to work out with this in the morning
10. If you were a car, what car would you like to be? Why?
A Land Rover Defender it is an all terrain car, it can navigate anything. This car is versatile and itâ€™s a work horse; it basically reflects who I am: I like a challenge and I take all situations as such. â€œHard work will never kill me itâ€™s the lack of it that willâ€
11. From a very general perspective,how do you handle change?
I believe that you have to internalize, appreciate, adopt and identify with all facets of change. I try to live by this.
12. If you had a superpower, what would it be?
I would have Stormâ€™s power (X â€“ Men â€“ I watched this with my son); I would be able to change weather patterns, where there is drought, I would have it rain, and where floods are, I would have it rain less. I would be preventing the many problems, landslides, lack of foodâ€¦, that come with the sporadic changes in weather.
13. Briefly tell us some of the things you’d do/change if you were elected
Â· I would put in place functioning and responsive systems; systems that put the needs of Kenyans first.
Â· Change how the government deals with contracts like for furniture; there are so many talented artisans that would benefit from this and we would be creating employment.
Â· Make sure cartels are dealt with, make sure the law applies equally to all so that the common mwananchi does not feel like there are two sets of laws; one for him and the other for the rich.