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Sri Lankan legislature is male dominant with only a handful of women in the supreme body. Hence most decisions made in Parliament are 'Masculine'. Most of the sitting female MPs have come through family links i.e- as a result of the death of Husband, brother or father. This pathetic scenario is evident in other elected bodies as well.

We strongly advocate immediate and pragmatic approach to address this issue. There are several ground situations that affect the election of women in to legislature.
1. Cultural issues- Sri Lanka still maintains a male dominant culture hence a change in people's perspectives on gender roles is necessary
2. Vulnerability- Due to the above fact women are prone to abuse, discrimination and violence in the political field dominated by thugs and crooks . This situation urges for a strong women's rights lobby. women should feel protected -safe and secure
3. People's perceptions- women in politics get lot of pressure from their family and friends. It is not considered a decent profession for women. Elections have become a battle resulting a fear psychosis during election period. The education system and the civil society should be talking and educating more about great women leaders. This will change the peoples perceptions over time.

4. Expenses- politics or elections are now multi- million Rupee businesses hence out of bounds for many. The Political parties must support through their funds or a government incentive may be introduced to fund female candidates subject to a limit
5. Not enough women candidates- the political parties may be thinking that the elections are fierce and women can't cope up with the trend . So they opt for males than 'fragile' women- making it a mockery and a real 'Bull fight'. This leads to less females on the nomination lists. A regulation is needed to maintain a minimum percentage of female candidates on a nomination list


jadefrank's picture

Politics needs women!

Dear Lakmali,

Thank you for sharing the issues and contributing factors that limit gender equality in Sri Lankan legislature. To clearly understand the current climate allows us to begin seeing potential solutions to change the status quo. And I hope that by sharing those factors here in a global community of women change-leaders, your insight will help others to evaluate the issue in their own countries, and a dialogue can open up to explore solutions.

I hope you're applying for the Voices of Our Future citizen journalism and empowerment training program:

I also wanted to introduce you to another member who recently shared views on a similar topic in her country, Malaysia. See Jana's journal here:

In friendship and solidarity,

MaDube's picture

Indeed politics needs women.

Indeed politics needs women. Not only does it need representation of women in terms of numbers but also in terms of ideology. I am disappointed to a large extent with the quality of female politicians in most African countries. They do not represent the interests of their fellow women but rather the interests of the political parties that nominated them. I hope the same will not happen in Sri Lanka and that when you have the numbers, they will be useful numbers for the cause of women.

Stella Paul's picture

Yes, indeed!

Dear Lokmali

Yes, democracy can't succeed and mature by the mere creation of a parliamentary system, equal representation is a must. Keep the demand on! You got my support!


Stella Paul
Twitter: @stellasglobe

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