By Brian Muchiri.
Nairobi County Woman Representative, Esther Passaris, on Wednesday, July 11 rubbed a section of city Twitter users the wrong way, when she said they are “expecting too much” from her as a leader, yet she has been in office “for only two years”.
Likening her period in office thus far to a 2-year-old child’s life on earth, Passaris said it would be delusional of city dwellers to think that she can address all their concerns in such a “short” time.
“[These are tantrums]. If you expected me to fix it all because you elected me, you expected far too much amid the ‘confusion’. I can’t fix what you, yourself, do not aspire to fix. Next time you vote, think twice, think issues,” said the first-time lawmaker in her tweet sent out at 6:40am Thursday.
Passaris’ meltdown was provoked by a dissatisfied Twitter user’s rant directed at the legislator.
“Esther, we elected you to fix those things you are talking about [a need to increase budgetary allocation to improve the welfare of Wanjiku]. It has been nearly two years [since you assumed office]. What institutional changes have you proposed so far?” posed the disgruntled user, identified only as Imani.
It is that question by Imani that sparked the apparent anger in Passaris.
The woman rep’s message, consequently, triggered a barrage of backlash, with a significant section of those who responded to the parliamentarian saying it seems like Passaris is admitting she is “not fit” for the city woman rep role.
One of the people who faulted the legislator over her remarks is renowned filmmaker Dr Njoki Ngumi, who highlighted why Imani’s concern was valid.
“Surely, mhesh… 1. ‘Thinking issues’ is why Imani asked that question. It is fair [for a voter] to ask near the midpoint of [an elected leader’s] term. 2. Wanting to fix things is why citizens vote and engage in public discourse, just like Imani. 3. Children and elected member terms are not the same thing,” said Dr Ngumi, who was seconded by tens of the social media platform’s subscribers.
Twitter user, Wambui JL, said: “How is asking our leaders to do their work equated to throwing tantrum?”
Japheth M. said: “As a leader, you ought to show restraint and emotional intelligence. [Passaris], your interaction with the electorate is sickening.”
Kanyi said: “What Esther is telling us is: ‘You made the wrong choice, people, and there is nothing you can do about it until 2022. Adios!”
Bezalel said: “I voted for Esther. I am ashamed of my decision, honestly.”
Esther Passaris is not new to engaging in heated exchanges with her presumed online fault-finders.
The woman rep recently called out cartoonist Patrick Gathara for criticising her alongside other lawmakers for burdening Kenyans with unnecessary lawmakers’ allowance demands.
Passaris clinched the Nairobi Woman Rep seat in the August 8, 2017 general election by over 700, 000 votes.
Her closest challenger, Jubilee’s Rachel Shebesh, garnered slightly over 570, 000 votes.