A Handbook for Gender-Inclusive Elections in Commonwealth Africa

Achieving 50:50 by 2030

Paperback: £45.00

A Handbook for Gender-Inclusive Elections in Commonwealth Africa

Publication date: 23 April 2018
ISBN: 978-1-84929-178-1
Pages: 184

The Commonwealth is far from achieving gender equality when it comes to women in political decision-making roles. Although Commonwealth Africa has some of the best-performing countries in this context, on average women’s representation is still only 23.3 per cent.

Elections are a critical process through which political leadership can be accessed. However, for gender inclusiveness to become a reality, it is necessary to specifically address the hurdles to women’s participation in all three stages of the electoral cycle, the pre-electoral, electoral and the post-electoral periods.

A Handbook for Gender-Inclusive Elections in Commonwealth Africa: Achieving 50:50 by 2030 reviews the systems, legislation and best practice that will need to be implemented and effectively monitored to get more women into politics and help to realise Sustainable Development Goal 5 – achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.

ContentsExpand or collapse me

Acronyms and Abbreviations
Executive Summary

1. Introduction
1.1 Why gender-inclusive elections matter
1.2 Women in Commonwealth African parliaments
1.3 Ministerial level
1.4 Presiding officers of legislatures
1.5 Heads of State/Government
1.6 What keeps women out of politics?
1.7 Barriers to women’s political participation across the electoral cycle
1.8 Keys to gender-inclusive elections
1.9 Checklist

2. Normative Frameworks
2.1 National instruments on gender
2.2 Checklists

3. The Legislature, Electoral Systems and Temporary Special Measures
3.1 Electoral systems
3.2 Temporary special measures (TSMs)
3.3 Rwanda: Constitutional quota – predominantly PR
3.4 South Africa: Pros and cons of voluntary TSMs in a PR system
3.5 Namibia: Impact of a mix of special measures
3.6 Botswana: The pitfalls of voluntary party TSMs
3.7 Uganda: Reserved seats – legislated quota in FPTP
3.8 Tanzania’s quota system
3.9 Lesotho: Tanzania model at local – but not at national – level
3.10 Mauritius: Gender-neutral quota at the local level
3.11 Malawi moves to introduce legislated quota in FPTP system
3.12 Ghana: The need for TSMs
3.13 Kenya: State taken to task for not abiding by constitutional quota
3.14 Cameroon: FPTP and ‘evidence of gender considerations’
3.15 Seychelles: Why TSMs matter
3.16 Checklist

4. Political Parties
4.1 Women in political party leadership
4.2 Political party support for women candidates
4.3 Party support for TSMs – legislated and voluntary
4.4 Financial support for women candidates
4.5 Violence against women in politics
4.6 Gender and campaigns
4.7 Political party allegiance
4.8 Women’s wings
4.9 Checklists for political parties

5. Gender and Election Management Bodies
5.1 Challenges in recruiting women to senior positions
5.2 How EMBs are mainstreaming gender institutionally
5.3 Pre-elections
5.4 Elections
5.5 Post-election
5.6 Electoral violence
5.7 Checklists

6. Civil Society
6.1 Mapping CSOs and WROs in Commonwealth Africa
6.2 Research and advocacy on TSMs
6.3 Mobilisation power of CSOs
6.4 Support to women candidates
6.5 Capacity building for newly elected leaders
6.6 Election watchdogs
6.7 Media monitoring
6.8 Budget monitoring
6.9 Monitoring gender violence during elections and promoting peace
6.10 Checklist

7. The Media and Social Media
7.1 Women in the news and in election coverage
7.2 Women politicians and the media
7.3 Gender-responsive reporting
7.4 Social (new) media and elections
7.5 Checklists

8. Election Observers
8.1 Gender balance in election observer missions
8.2 Regional and international co-operation
8.3 Checklist

9. Conclusions and Recommendations
9.1 Requisite policy actions for key stakeholders
9.2 Conclusion