Source: Times Live
Chief electoral officer Pansy Tlakula called on Friday for a quota system to improve women's representation in the public and private sector.

She said the Independent Electoral Commission was not happy with the number of women candidates in local government elections to be held on May 18.

"The male/female split is not pleasing at all," Tlakula told a business breakfast in Johannesburg.

Out of 53,000 candidates only 37 percent are women.

"We are not pleased with that because women make up 54 percent of the voters roll...

"There are a few parties that have zero percent women candidates."

She said at this rate, especially at local government level, South Africa would not reach the Southern African Development Community goal for a 50/50 gender representation in government by 2015.

On the national level, South Africa's women representation in parliament compared well with other countries but local government level was a different story, she said.

Tlakula said she believed that the only answer to secure better women representation in both the public and private sector, would be through introducing legislation enforcing it.

"I know it's controversial...but we need quotas in the private and public sector"," she told Sapa after the briefing.

Independent Electoral Commission boss Pansy Tlakula. � ST.

Independent Electoral Commission boss Pansy Tlakula.
Photograph by: Simon Mathebula
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