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Inventing Nairobi
SEPTEMBER 2005
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Photo captions by Charles E. Cobb, Jr.
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Women's Rights
Photograph by David Alan Harvey

"I started in politics in 1965 because my husband could not, since he was born in Somalia," says Jemillah Aluoch Mohammed. She was elected councillor from Nyanza District near Lake Victoria about 150 miles (240 kilometers) west of Nairobi. She was visiting the city as a member of the Kenya African National Union (KANU) opposition party when this photo was taken. Her political career was unexpected. "My husband asked me to run for office. And since I never went to school, my husband drafted speeches for me because he was learned. I fought for women's rights because in those times no woman was a leader, very few had national identity cards, and for you to get a job you had to use your husband's name and give your salary to him. I never liked it. My husband felt I was too outspoken and asked me to quit politics, but I was now too much into it. Those who used to run against me were all men and I would defeat them. That made me like politics a lot and realize that women can also lead. I would come home from meetings very late and my husband would threaten to send me back to my home. I would tell him, 'This is my home! It is you that I will send back to Somalia.' "

Photo Fast Facts
Camera: Nikon D70
Film Type: Digital
Lens: 22mm
Speed and F-Stop: 1/40 @ f/6.3

Weather Conditions: Unrecorded
Time of Day: 5:24 p.m.
Lighting Techniques: Strobe light
Special Equipment: Light box

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