UN director slams Liberia for lack of women in parliament

Executive director of United Nations Mlambo Ngcuka urges Liberia to empower female representation in country's parliament

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

The United Nations Women Executive Director Hhumzile Mlambo Ngcuka has been investigating since Feb. 25 the situations of females in the West African Country.

The United Nations Women Executive Director Hhumzile Mlambo Ngcuka has criticised the tiny West African country of Liberia due to the lack of representation of women in Liberian parliament, despite the country having a female president.

UN Women’s director, Hhumzile Mlambo said that it is ‘’a problem and it has to be fixed," in regards to the lack of female representation in parliament,

Ngcuka held a news conference in the country’s capital Monrovia on Tuesday and said, ‘’I think it is a problem that we only have 10 percent of women in the upper house and 11 percent in the lower house… What is wrong with this picture? We have to fix this”.

Liberia is ranked 40th out of 54 African countries in terms of its implementation of female representation in politics and 113th in the world.

Liberian women have been campaigning for the passage of a Gender Equity Bill, locally called ‘’30 Percent Quota Bill’’.

The bill demands that, gender (male or female) in the legislative body should not be less than 30 percent or more than 70 percent.

However, general elections in Liberia are expected to be held in 2017.

She also said, increased levels of violence against women and girls in both Ebola and post-Ebola periods can not be accepted.

"The gains made in the socio-economic and political areas here are constantly being hampered by the escalating case of sexual and gender-based violence and the prevalence of harmful traditional practices including child marriage and female genital mutilation,” Ngcuka said.

Ngcuka has been investigating the situation of women and girls in the West African Country since Feb. 25.

TRTWorld and agencies