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On new women of Parliament

9-5-2018

In its today’s edition, L’Orient Le Jour wrote about women representation in the new Lebanese Parliament, pointing to a modest share not exceeding 4.68%, whereby only six women landed seats out of the 128 seats in the legislature. These include two lawmakers that have been re-elected, and they are, Bahiya Hariri the aunt of premier Saad Hariri for Future Movement, and Sitrida Tawk Geagea, wife of Lebanese Party chief, Samir Geagea, who retains her seat for the LF Party since 2005. The new faces voted into the Parliament are, the minister of state for administrative reform, Dr. Inaya Izzedine, representing Amal Movement in the South 2nd District; Paula Yacubian, television journalist and member of 7 Party, for Beirut 1st District; Rula Tabsh Jarudi, lawyer, representing Future Movement in Beirut 1st District and Dima Jamali, university professor and development consultant from the North, representing Future Movement as well. In its analysis, L’Orient Le Jour said the ratio of women in the new parliament is dramatically low, indicating reluctance on part of the major political parties to recruit women on their electoral lists. Parties, like the Kataeb (phalange) party, the PSP, Marada, Hizbullah, FPM and the Syrian Socialist Nationalist party did not back women’s access to the legislature, the newspaper explained. It concluded by saying that, in the absence of a law that enforces a minimum 30% female representation quota, Lebanese women cannot make it to the House of Representatives. In this respect, Jeolle Abu Farhat from Women in Front association, said the poor turnout was expected, pledging to continue her advocacy campaign and struggle to prop the participation of women in political life, revealing that work is underway to pressure for the appointment of women ministers in the new cabinet. (L’Orient Le Jour, An Nahar, May 9, 2018)

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