The women’s suffrage came into force in 1986 with women’s ability to both actively vote in elections and passively stand for elections.i To date no woman has been elected Prime Minister or President.

Presidential and national assembly elections took place on the 23rd of January 2011. No woman was elected President, although the number of women elected to hold national assembly seats is gradually increasing, with 10.5% in 2005 and 12.5% in 2011.ii

Article 74 of the 2004 Constitution requires that at least three of the nine members of the Constitutional Court be women.iii

A 2003 National Dialogue recommended that women make up 35% of posts in national ministries and political parties, yet these are just recommendations which have not been implemented. There is no constitutional quota pertaining to advancing the representation of women in political office.iv

The lack of constitutional quotas centered on gender parity in political and public office has been termed ‘gender blindness’. The lack of recognition of women's historic experience of systemic marginalisation and disempowerment socially, economically or politically enable the absence of measures of redress such as quotas to exist.v

In the absence of a constitutional quota there is the 2003 National Dialogue recommendation and a reaffirmation in the last sentence of the Preamble to the 2004 Constitution affirming the Republic's commitment to all ratified international conventions and in particular to those that prohibit discrimination against women and those relating to the protection of the rights of



Women’s Political Participation Recent Statistics


2006 Presidential & Parliamentary Elections

2011 Presidential & Parliamentary Elections

Female Presidential Candidates



Females Securing Lower or single House Seats

11/105 or 10.5% ix

13/104 or 12.5%x

Females Securing Upper House or Senate Seats


No Data


No Data



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