3 Jun 2013

Vanuatu Cabinet takes positive stance on women's seats

7:32 pm on 3 June 2013

A women's advocacy group in Vanuatu says it's a breakthrough to have ministers acknowledge that women deserve to have seats set aside for them in parliament.

The Council of Ministers has agreed that there should be a right for women to have reserved seats in parliament.

In 2012, 17 women contested the elections, but none were elected to parliament

The chairperson of the Coalition for Gender Equity in Parliament, Jenny Ligo, says there is still a long way to go, but agreeing on a 30 percent minimum representation of women in parliament, is a big step.

"The government is seeing the reality now that womens participation, especially in political decisions, have been made very little impact. And now we see this political will on giving the women status, participation, it's a big improvement."

Jenny Ligo says the issue is expected to go through parliament in August and they hope the department of womens affairs will ensure women are educated on the issue.