Speaker confirms Solomon Government's commitment to women

Date: Monday, September 19, 2011

UN Women Gender Equality in Political Governance programme in partnership with the Women in Shared Decision Making and the Electoral Commission BRIDGE Facilitators hosted a BRIDGE Electoral Systems and Gender workshop last week in Honiara, Solomon Islands.

Solomon Islands Speaker and Elections Commissioner Sir Allen Kemakeza during his opening remarks at the workshop confirmed the Solomon Islands Government’s commitment and seriousness to allocate seats for women by the 2014 elections.

In his speech, Sir Kemakeza highlighted the Prime Minister’s intention to allocate 5 seats for women and saw the workshop as timely in educating Solomon Islands’ senior electoral stakeholders on options available to progress discussion on electoral reform.

Sir Kemakeza has given the electoral commission and electoral stakeholders up to 2013 to present him with concrete alternatives on reform initiatives and/or electoral amendments.

The workshop, which ran from 5th to the 9th of September, was to empower electoral stakeholders towards an understanding of electoral systems and their implications on the representation of various groups in society - with a specific focus on how electoral systems affect the representation of women.

Participants included senior electoral stakeholders such as election managers, returning officers and officials of responsible line ministries.

The workshop participants were trained on underlying principles of electoral systems, electoral system basics and examples of electoral systems, effects of different electoral systems and strategies for representation (including quotas for women).