Not many people, especially men, would ever imagine working closely together with their mother-in-laws, let alone doing so on a regular basis. But for one Mwangi Ngarama, this will probably be the norm for the next five years.
Ngarama and his mother-in-law Grace Mwathi were both recently elected as Members of County Assembly (MCAs) in Nakuru County’s Lanet Umoja and Bahati wards respectively where they vied for the seats under United Democratic Alliance (UDA) tickets.
Mwathi, who fell short at the 2017 polls where she came in third in Bahati’s MCA contest, had been serving as a nominated MCA in the Nakuru County Assembly while Ngarama was first elected to the county assembly in 2013.
If that wasn’t an uncanny coincidence already, Mwathi’s first-born daughter and Ngarama’s wife, Lilian Mwathi, will also be joining them the Nakuru County Assembly where she has apparently been working as a clerk for the last five years.
In this one-of-a-kind scenario, a wife, husband and mother-in-law will all be working together under the same roof.
“I feel honoured by the trust the people of Bahati have bestowed on me to lead them for the next five years. It is even a bigger honour that my son-in-law has also been elected,” Mwathi said as quoted by the Standard.
She added: “During the last five years, I have worked with my daughter at the Assembly where we had to interact as family and in official capacities. It was an exciting experience for us.”
According to Mwathi, despite being in the County Assembly with her daughter she did her best to ensure that they would not sit in any committee at the same time. They hope to replicate this convenient tactic moving forward.
“We shall do the same this time to ensure my daughter and her husband do not find ourselves in the same committee. During debates, we may differ but at no time shall I ‘beat’ my son,” said Mwathi.
On his part Ngarama noted that he rarely crossed paths with his wife since she joined the county assembly. In the rare instances that he did, he kept his interactions strictly official.
“At the beginning, my wife was the Personal Assistant to Susan Kihika who was then the Speaker of the County Assembly. She was later absorbed as a clerk,” said Ngarama.
“I only met with my wife on a few official occasions despite working in the same place. Whenever it happened, she had to refer to me officially and not as ‘Mwas’ since it had to be recorded on the Hansard,” said Mwangi.
For the sake of Nakuru residents let’s hope the trio will be able to separate their family lives with their elective seats’ mandate.