Sunday July 25, 2021
Batulo Sheikh Ahmed Gabale, Chairperson of the Somali National Women's Association and leader of the new gender quota committee.
Mogadishu (HOL) - The Prime Minister of Somalia, Mohamed Hussein Roble, has appointed a 13-member committee to ensure that women retain a 30% quota in both houses of parliament.
The committee will be led by Ms. Batulo Sheikh Gabale, Chairperson of the Somali National Women's Association. PM Roble nominated 12 female and one male member.
Roble made the quota pledge in January after talks with women's rights campaigners and female lawmakers — who currently hold 24% of the 329 seats in Somalia's lower and upper houses of parliament, a gain of 10% from the previous election where there was no gender enforcement mechanism in place.
As part of the drive to accelerate the quota for women, the Somali government said it would reduce the fee for Somali women candidates for both houses of parliament by 50%.
Somalia is a patriarchal clan-based society, where lineage is traced paternally. This has made it difficult for women to participate in clan-based politics. With support from the international community, women's civil society groups successfully pushed for a gender quota to address the clear disadvantage women face in politics.
Campaigners said that ensuring women have a stronger say in society by being visible in the highest positions will help solve the myriad of problems that face Somali women, including high rates of child marriage and gender violence, including rape and female genital mutilation (FGM).
More than 100 countries have adopted the women's quota system.
Here is a full list of the committee.