More women in govt – survey

2013-01-28 10:54

The number of women in all three levels of government has increased over the past 18 years, the SA Institute of Race Relations (SAIRR) has said.

In 1994 women made up 24% of provincial legislatures. This increased to 42% in 2009, a survey conducted by the SAIRR shows.

In 2000, 28% of local government representatives were women, which increased to 38% in 2011.

In 1994, 28% of MPs were women, and in 2012, 51%.

According to the survey the ANC had the highest number, with 51% of its MPs being women in 2012.

A third of the Democratic Alliance’s MPs were women.

The Inkatha Freedom Party had the lowest, with 22%.

The SAIRR’s Georgina Alexander said: “While progress has been made in getting greater representation of women in politics, it is not necessarily enough to ensure that the real challenges facing women in the country are being addressed by the government.”

An example was the Traditional Courts Bill of 2012, she said.

This contradicted the gender Equality Bill, in that it excluded women from traditional courts.

“Women would therefore be excluded from attending proceedings in so-called ‘sacred spaces’ and would require a man to speak on their behalf,” said Alexander.

“The bill could worsen conditions for millions of women living under traditional leadership in rural areas.”

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