Liberia: Women Seek Equity

Minority of female legislators at the House of Representatives have submitted a bill seeking political equity with their male counterparts.

They are, therefore, craving the indulgence of full plenary to amend section 4.5 the new election law of Liberia to enhance their objective.

In a communication Tuesday, Montserrado County Representative Josephine George Francis said they want section 6 of the law to be added to provide consideration with respect to gender equity in the political process of Liberia. She disclosed that the current political space in the country was not balanced as it puts the women below the line in political processes. But minutes after the communication was read, majority of lawmakers most of whom males were opposed to the request describing it as ‘unconstitutional’.

Article 18 of the constitution states: “All Liberian citizens shall have equal opportunity for work and employment regardless of sex, creed, religion, ethnic background, place of origin or political affiliation, and all shall be entitled to equal pay for equal work.” However, the debate which lasted for 30 minutes later saw members of the House referring the communication to its Standing Committee on Judiciary, Labor for members to look into the matter and advice plenary in two weeks.

This is not the first time female legislators are seeking political equity. Some three years ago, female lawmakers presented a bill to the Senate seeking 40 percent representation at the National Legislature. But the bill was heavily rejected.

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