Source: www.allAfrica.com by Margareta Wa Gacheru
News of Wangari Maathai’s demise on Sunday, September 25th spread around the world like wildfire. What’s striking is that Wangari is one person who (for better or worse) got heaps of global media coverage in her lifetime, not only at her demise, which is rare.
Usually, one has to wait for someone’s obituary to find out all the incredible tidbits about their life. But not Wangari: she was a news maker whose charismatic leadership and controversial stands for noble causes, however popular or unpopular, made her front page news since the 1970s in Kenya and a headliner in international news most often in this new millennium.
This is not to say that Wangari sought the limelight. No! The woman simply sought justice and equity and the ‘best practices’ in all arenas, particularly in government-where she knew, for instance, that women deserved equal treatment to men, and jobless people were just as entitled to jobs as any other human being. Even the Greenbelt Movement grew out of Wangari’s sense of justice and the need to take care of the planet as well as the people who were suffering as a consequence of deforestation, poverty, and poor social policies that neglected the plight of the vast majority of the people. (more…)