When we lost Amina Chifupa, the young female voice in parliament was dealt a severe blow. I wasn't sure that we would recover. I thought we'd be stuck in silence in that ghetto called Viti Maalum. Especially since Jay Kay was ill-advisedly suggesting even more special seats for women as a way to increase our political clout!
But I did notice that Amina hadn't been entirely alone: there was a quiet young woman in nerd chic glasses sitting somewhere behind Rashid Hamad Mohamed (CUF-Wawi). He tends to push up the bar and many parliamentarians sound remedial if they speak within half an hour of a contribution by the leader of the opposition. This first-time Special Seats MP did not suffer that problem as she earnestly clutched her written speeches with trembling fingers and powered through her stage fright.
I have yet to see her screaming like Anna Kilango Malecela of the overwhelmingly dramatic soliloquies. I'm conservative like that, I like my leaders to handle themselves when they are in their formal role.
I was very, very happy when she announced her Kawe candidacy (Christmas came early this year). Although it was a risk to endorse her on the blog* she came through like a champion. And now I get to have Halima Mdee as my very own shiny, brand-spanking newly elected, self-made-woman, kick-ass MP. I know it is a bad idea to fall for a politician, but The Gut tells me that this one might just be the one of the good eggs in the tray.
*The last time I totally bought into a young politician, he pitched a wobbly in his mid-term and I haven't been able to figure out his behavior since. Once bitten, twice shy.