Home NewsLiberia UN Commends political parties, Nat’l Elections Commission…

UN Commends political parties, Nat’l Elections Commission…

by Edward Tamba

MONROVIA, LIBERIA-The UN in Liberia, through the UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) and the UNDP, commends political parties and the National Elections Commission (NEC) on the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Section 4.5 of the Elections Law, which governs the nomination of candidates for elective positions in the upcoming elections.

The signing of the MoU on May 11, 2023, is a significant milestone towards greater inclusion of women in the 2023 elections, as it strengthens the commitment of political parties to ensure that not less than 30 percent of women are on their candidate listings.

The UN also recognizes the important role of the Interparty Consultative Committee in drafting and validating the MoU. This MoU on candidate nomination follows the signing of the Farmington Declaration, which reaffirms the commitment of political parties to implement the Violence against Women in Elections Protocol and to foster peaceful, more inclusive elections.

Liberia is currently ranked 162 out of 185 on the Inter-parliamentary Union’s list of women in national parliaments. Despite women and girls constituting around 50 percent of the population, women in Liberia occupy less than 11 percent of the 103 seats in the Legislature.

The percentage of women has fallen since 2006–a trend that correlates to a decrease in the percentage of women on candidate listings over time.

The UN commends national partners–the NEC, Women’s Legislative Caucus, the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, women’s rights organizations, and other civil society organizations, for their efforts to promote reforms of Liberia’s Elections Law.

The concerted and continued efforts of these partners and their engagements with the Legislature and the political parties have paved the way for the Legislative passage of Amendment 4.5 of the Elections Law and for the signing of the MoU by political parties to include a minimum of 30 percent representation of women on their candidates’ list.

The UN further commends those political parties that have taken concrete steps to include 40 percent or more women on their candidate listings. This demonstrates a strong commitment to fostering more internally democratic political parties and to achieve a more inclusive and equitable Liberia.

The UN calls on political actors to consistently enforce the MOU and stands ready to support national partners–including ministries, agencies and commissions, local government structures, and political parties–to develop or reform laws and policies that provide for temporary special measures, including gender quotas for elected and appointed positions, in line with Liberia’s international, regional, and national commitments.

The United Nations in Liberia acknowledges the partnership and support of the European Union, the Government of Sweden, the Government of Ireland, and the United Nations Peace-building Fund, in promoting greater gender equality and women’s engagement in political and governance processes in Liberia.



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