Joanna Roper delivers equality address to University of Nairobi students

Nic Hailey and Joanna Roper
Nic Hailey is joined by Joanna Roper and team members from the UK High Commission to celebrate 100 years since women were given the vote in the UK. Photo: Twitter/HCNicHailey

Yesterday, UK Foreign Office Special Envoy for Gender Equality and Chair of Foreign and Commonwealth Office Women, Joanna Roper began her two day visit to Kenya by addressing University of Nairobi students on the importance of girls’ education.

Her talk also covered female empowerment and how striving for full equality in politics and society remains as important today as it was a hundred years ago when British women won the right to vote.

Back in 1918, the UK Parliament passed an act granting the vote to around 8.4 million women who were over the age of 30, householders, the wives of householders, occupiers of property with an annual rent of £5, and graduates of British universities.

Tweeting after her address to the students, Ms Roper said: Really enjoyed this session at Uni of Nairobi. In the words of their anthem: knowledge will surely set them free.”

She was joined by UK High Commissioner to Kenya Nic Hailey, for a lunchtime meeting with The Kenya Women Parliamentary Association (KEWOPA) which is a caucus of all women Parliamentarians in Kenya for a conversation on gender equality.

Nic Hailey and KEWOPA
Nic Hailey and Joanna Roper with members of the Kenya Women Parliamentary Association (KEWOPA). Photo: Twitter/KEWOPA

Commenting during the gathering, National Assembly member Hon, Esther Passaris, Tweeted: “Gender inequality in the Kenyan context is our problem to fix and we must be accountable for donor funds.”