Education Minister, Mutula Kilonzo has come out to defend his remarks on schoolgirls’ skirts. The Minister on Monday denied he advocated for miniskirts, adding he only talked about skirts the girls would feel comfortable in.
“Why would I apologise for something I did not do. I am even against miniskirts at the workplace,” the minister stated.
Mutula announced that he will show Kenyans a sample of a skirt he is advocating for on Thursday.
“I will show Kenyans the kind of skirt I am talking about and then bishops will tell me whether it undermines morality,” he added.
Mutula further said he certainly will not resign as Education Minister as demanded by religious leaders.
Mutula also warned he would sue media houses that continue to say he is advocating for miniskirts in schools.
“I am watching the media with a sharp lawyer’s eyes. I will certainly sue if this continues,” he threatened.
He made the remarks in Nairobi while opening a workshop on peace building through education.
Mutula sparked off a debate when he reportedly said schoolgirls should be allowed to wear short skirts.
Mutula’s skirt statement came hot on the heels of a school uniform protest that saw students at Rwathia Secondary in Murang’a go on strike.
The students who went on strike three weeks ago had complained that their new purple skirts were too long, ugly and not meant for their age.
On Monday, Mutula said Kenyans should not waste time engaging in the debate arguing that the media misreported him.
“Even in the 1960s and 1970s when mini-skirts were popular, I used to avoid women with short skirts and dresses,” he added.
He reiterated that girls should dress well in school for learning to be easier.
At the same time, the Catholic Church has faulted Education Minister Mutula Kilonzo over his remarks on skirts and told him to stop misleading learners.
Homa Bay Catholic Diocese Bishop, Philp Anyolo and his Kisii counterpart, Joseph Mairura said Mr Mutula is an elderly and respected lawyer who should show exemplary leadership. Addressing faithful at Nyabururu Catholic church on Sunday during a thanksgiving Mass of Bishop Mairura’s 17th anniversary, Anyolo urged parents and teachers to shun Mutula’s statements and mold responsible citizens.
Anyolo, who is the Kenya Episcopal Conference vice chairman, told students to disregard the minister’s advise, stressing the?church will not keep quiet when leaders pollute the mind of the youths.
Bishop Mairura said Mutula’s remarks were an embarrassment to lawyers and asked the learned friends to prevail upon him.
“If Mutula’s counsel were heeded, it would make the girl-child vulnerable and lead to erosion of moral values, crimes and conflicts,” he said.
By Allan Kisia and Robert Nyasato, The Standard