Somali elders and electoral institutions must respect the 30% quota for women Parliamentarians agreed by the Somali National Leadership Forum. Ending decades of conflict in Somalia by forming a new dispensation cannot be achieved without the leadership of the country’s women, says ARAGTO-IFISO today.
While women’s representation was a goal in the formation of the 2012 Somali Parliament, the 30% quota was not met. As Somalia moves forward in the 2016 electoral process it must rise to its own commitments to women’s representation in Parliament.
A total of 135 traditional Somali elders from across Somalia’s clans will select 14,025 delegates to 275 electoral colleges who will in turn elect the 275 members of Somalia’s Parliament. The 30% quota applies equally to members of the electoral college.
If any electoral college fails to elect a woman to every third Parliamentary seat, ARAGTO-IFISO calls upon the Chairperson of the Federal Indirect Electoral Implementation Team (FIEIT) to reject its vote.
“Women have suffered disproportionately over more than two and a half decades of civil war,” said Hassan Shire, Chairperson of ARAGTO-IFISO. “The next Somali Parliament must have roots within the experiences of families and victims of this conflict, who will understand and take the hard steps needed to secure freedom and peace for Somalia,” continued Shire.
ARAGTO-IFISO is a civil society initiative to shine the spotlight on the Somali electoral process and ensure national actors live up to their commitments to full women’s participation in Somali governance and to free and fair elections.