Women leaders, who in the past lurked in the shadows of major political protagonists and their battles seem to have changed tack and are now waging wars from the frontline. Previously the voices of reason in politics, the female politicians are going at one another\u2019s blouses and weaves with abandon, in a bruising Tanga Tanga versus Kieleweke supremacy battle where no prisoners are taken. \u00a0Through their rival groups\u00ac\u2013Team Embrace and Inua Mama, Jenga Taifa\u00ac\u2013the women are proving that indeed what a man can do, a woman can do better. Complete with contrasting uniforms - Embrace team wear white while their Inua mama rivals don red- they have taken over from their male counterparts and anything goes, including plotting humiliations on rivals. \u00a0 Team Embrace is under the stewardship of Kirinyaga Governor Ann Waiguru and allied to politicians supporting President Uhuru Kenyatta\u2019s handshake with Raila Odinga while the Inua Mama, Jenga Taifa team is led by Kandara legislator, Alice Wahome and support the group backing Deputy President William Ruto\u2019s quest to take over the presidency in 2022. The groupings typically engage in parallel activities and preach contradictory and self-serving messages on the early 2022 campaigns, war on graft and Building Bridges Initiative (BBI). Last weekend, Nairobi County Woman Rep Esther Passaris of Embrace charged that their rivals, contrary to what they declare, do not preach cohesion and empowerment of women.\u00a0 While speaking in Kakamega, Passaris lashed out at the Inua Mama team, saying they were created to wage war against Embrace and poison their agenda. She charged that while Embrace was working behind President Uhuru Kenyatta, the Inua Mama, working with his deputy Ruto, had clear instructions to undermine the Head of State. \u201cWhen we decided to come together (launched Embrace) what was really sad is to see another team created under the team Tanga Tanga called Inua Mama trying to counter what we are doing...it\u2019s one thing (for Ruto) to say he is embracing the President and quite another to create another group (Inua Mama) that is undermining the President at the same time,\u201d she said. Internal wars During the weekly Punchline interview on our sister TV station K24 last week, Veteran politician and Narc-Kenya party leader Martha Karua, when reacting to a query as to why she is not party to the groupings, described the two teams as \u201cguns for hire\u201d by different functions of Jubilee. \u201cYou forget that I lead Narc-Kenya while the two groups you cite are driven by internal wars in Jubilee Party. Be informed that I am not a gun for hire!\u201d she said. In what was previously unthinkable, some of the women leaders are not only deliberately taking battles to the doorsteps of vocal rivals but also mobilising backers to heckle and humiliate them even in church functions. Mid-June, Murang\u2019a Woman Rep Sabina Chege, who had led the Embrace group to a function at Kimorori grounds in her county, shed tears after part of the crowd booed her. Though Chege said her tears were over President Uhuru\u2019s generous offer of goodies to the county, sympathisers of the rival group were alleged to have organised the youth to heckle her and create the impression that Embrace team had ran into hostility in the county. The Embrace Team has been backing calls by the President against early campaigns and endorsing BBI. Indeed, last week while presenting their views to the same team, they backed the expansion of the Executive, the Uhuru-Raila Odinga unity pact and the anti-graft crusade. The Inua Mama team, in markedly different strategy, has expressed reservations about the BBI and the Handshake, claiming they are strategies calculated to derail Ruto\u2019s 2022 quest while terming the fight against graft as a political witch-hunt targeting the DP and his lieutenants. Embrace whose colour theme is white comprises governors and legislators, and government officials, notably Youth and Gender Chief Administrative Secretary Rachael Shebesh and National Gender and Equality Commission member Priscilla Nyokabi. The two, and occasionally Cabinet Secretaries, have been accompanying the team whose members are Woman Reps Gathoni Wa Muchomba (Kiambu), Sabina Chege (Murang\u2019a), Gladys Wanga (Homa Bay), Florence Mutua (Busia), Pamela Odhiambo (Migori), Elsie Muhanda (Kakamega) and Passaris. Others are Fatuma Gedi (Wajir), Gladwell Cheruiyot (Baringo) Rosa Buyu (Kisumu) and Joyce Kamene (Machakos) and legislators Ruth Mwaniki (Kigumo), Naisula Lesuuda (Samburu West), Mishi Mboko (Likoni) and Nairobi Speaker Beatrice Elachi, among others. The Embrace group, which was created early this year, seeks to rally the country behind Uhuru-Raila handshake and organise campaigns against femicide. However, they have veered off and their goal has crystallised around attacking Tanga Tanga. On the other hand, the red-branded Inua Mama team, which was apparently created to counter Embrace, has senators and MPs and though they have set their goal as uplifting the lot of women, they appear to have become closely identified with Tanga Tanga with unmistakable sympathies for the DP. Prayer rally They also have been criss-crossing the country, mostly targeting members\u2019 backyards, sometimes using helicopters, preaching or echoing the Tanga Tanga blueprint. That the group is part of the DP\u2019s camp was confirmed two weeks ago when he accompanied them to a prayer rally in Nanyuki Stadium where they were hosted by Laikipia Woman Rep Cate Waruguru, who together with Alice Wahome have become the group\u2019s face of defiance. The team comprises Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika, Margaret Kamar (Uasin Gishu), Falhadha Iman (nominated), Millicent Omanga (nominated) Woman Reps, Faith Gitau (Nyandarua), Wangui Ngirichi (Kirinyaga), Rahab Mukami (Nyeri), Rehema Jaldesa (Isiolo), Joyce Korir (Bomet) and Gladys Shollei (Uasin Gishu). It also has Beatrice Nkatha (Tharaka Nithi), MPs Wahome, Mary Waithira (Maragwa), Jane Kihara (Naivasha), Aisha Jumwa (Malindi) and Halima Mucheke (nominated), among others. While both sides denied fighting the other or even engaging in politics, with each side refusing to discuss the other, interviews with People Daily indicated that they were working at cross-purposes on political and national issues. Said Kandara\u2019s Wahome: \u201cThere is no supremacy battle between us since we are not operating in the same space.\u201d But this even as their talks at the rallies and in media interviews depict a growing political animosity between the two groups. \u201cWe have no supremacy battles with anyone or any outfit. Inua Mama is a women empowerment programme that seeks to build capacity for women in leadership and also support grassroots women economic initiatives and income-generating activities,\u201d she said. When asked why women have abandoned calmness in politics and opted for confrontation and ugly political duels, the MP who has been facing criticism from the president\u2019s backers for allegedly betraying him, said: \u201cEven men have refused to be a voice of reason in politics\u201d.