Rachel Shebesh

Rachel Shebesh

Rachel Shebesh, born Rachel Wambui Wainaina, is a Kenyan politician who served as Nairobi Woman Representative between 2013 and 2017.

Rachel was born in Nairobi on 1st July 1971. Her father, Simon Wainaina Mbugua, was a prominent city politician and at one time served as Nairobi Mayor. 

Rachel attended Lavington Primary School and later Kianda School for her secondary schools. She later moved to the UK where she studied design at a college in London. After her graduation, she returned to Kenya and engaged in fashion and design businesses. 

She, however, joined politics in 2006 and became one of the grassroots mobilisers of the ODM Party which ultimately nominated her to Parliament in 2008. While in Parliament, she became one of the vocal defenders of ODM Leader Raila Odinga who was serving as Prime Minister between 2008 and 2013. 

Towards the end of her term, Shebesh decamped from ODM and joined The National Alliance (TNA) headed by Uhuru Kenyatta.

She subsequently became part of Uhuru’s campaign team and was particularly vocal in pushing Uhuru to disown a coalition agreement he had made to shelve his presidential bid in support of Musalia Mudavadi. 

She was elected the first Woman Representative in Nairobi City County in the 2013 general election and served until 2017. Her re-election bid was unsuccessful as she lost the seat to Esther Passaris of ODM.

Her unsuccessful campaign was attributed to a fallout between her and the Jubilee gubernatorial candidate Mike Sonko that saw her pushed out of the Jubilee Nairobi County Campaign team. 

Despite the loss, President Uhuru Kenyatta rewarded her with a government appointment after the election - picking her as a Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) in the Ministry of Gender and Public Service.