Women politicians in Africa face huge odds but can make a real difference

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Women politicians in Africa face huge odds but can make a real difference

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Women are gaining ground in politics around the world. Last year, the so-called “pink wave” saw a record number of women elected to Congressin the US’s mid-term elections. There are signs of progress in Africa, too.

Last October, Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed was praised for his “transformative leadership” after appointing a new set of ministers – half of whom were women. Earlier in February, Egyptian lawmakers proposed amending the constitution to guarantee women 25% of the seats in the national parliament. If it’s approved, this change would significantly increase the political representation of Egyptian women. At present they make up just 15% of the legislature.

There’s a huge amount of variation in women’s political representation across Africa, a fact shown by the Inter-Parliamentary Union and UN Women’s map of Women in Politics. In some countries, including Rwanda, Uganda and Tanzania, they make up a substantial portion of the legislature. However, women remain poorly represented in many others.

Click here to read the full article published by News 24 on 14 February 2019.

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