RESERVED SEATS

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Some prominent women leaders attending the launch of Strengthening the Electoral Cycle in the Solomon Islands Project (SECSIP’s) Outstanding Women of Solomon Islands initiative at YWCA yesterday. PHOTO: DANIEL KAKADI.

Govt to introduce Temporary Special Measures in three provinces

 

By EDDIE OSIFELO

Some prominent women leaders attending the launch of Strengthening the Electoral Cycle in the Solomon Islands Project (SECSIP’s) Outstanding Women of Solomon Islands initiative at YWCA on Tuesday. PHOTO: DANIEL KAKADI.

THE government plans to introduce the Temporary Special Measures (TSM) through reserved seats in three provincial governments – Malaita, Guadalcanal and Western.

Dr Cedric Alependava, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Women, Youth Children and Family Affairs (MWYCFA) confirmed this during the launch of Strengthening the Electoral Cycle in the Solomon Islands Project (SECSIP’s) Outstanding Women of Solomon Islands initiative and resource centre equipment handover in Honiara yesterday.

He said his Ministry is working in collaboration with the Ministry of Provincial Government and Institutional Strengthening, and lawyers are editing in order to include the reserved seats.

“My Ministry is happy to work with the churches and women’s organisations such as the Solomon Islands National Council of Women, the Women’s Rights Action Movement (WRAM), the Young Women’s Parliamentary Group, Voice Blong Mere Solomon, the YWCA of Solomon Islands and the West Are Are Rokotanikeni Association in moving this TSM work along.

“My Ministry will also work closely with the Ministry of Provincial Government and the nine provincial government assemblies in the country to facilitate the introduction of TSM in the Provincial Government Act,” he said.

Alependava acknowledged the UN Women for providing support to his Ministry for the TSM work and his Ministry is also grateful to the Women’s Rights Action Movement in supporting his Ministry through legal advice and SECSIP’s Women’s Leadership and Political Participation with technical advice on TSM.

“TSM is just one of the initiatives that my Ministry is leading in our efforts to implement the National Gender Equality and Women’s Development Policy in addressing its policy priority outcome, to facilitate the equal participation of women and men at all levels of decision making, government and leadership.

“It is my sincere hope that all our development partners will also come to the discussion table when the TSM call is made,” he said.

The TSM policy is one way to give woman a chance to participate in political decision making in the provincial and national levels.

Currently, there are two women, Lannelle Tanangada and Freda Tuki in the 50 seats National Parliament and four women elected in the nine provincial governments.

Since the country gained Independence in 1978, only four women have made it into Parliament.