Yemeni Women Demand Quotas for Political Participation

National Yemen

Asma'a al-Joudairi- Head of National Yemeni Women Association

NY Staff

The recent revolution has empowered Yemeni women to begin demanding more rights to participate in Yemen’s politics. One such demand is that women should hold more positions in government institutions and elected ministries to support appropriate decision-making processes. For them, their demand for more representation is not only because women form over 50% of Yemen’s population, but also that their perspectives and visions are more appealing than those of men.

Women now believe that they can play an important role in the country and win more votes than men. This shift is largely previous reforms were empty, and do not carry the promise of this new push for reforms. “Women in the political field refused the reforms presented by the former president because they totally ignored women,” Rahma Houjera said.

To gain more positions in Yemen’s government, women have started to demand a quota system that will guarantee a set amount of positions in various government institutions.

If reforms such as a quota system in the constitution are approved, women will have the chance to take part in the political life by joining political parties as well as civil and governmental institutions and organizations.

Amat Assalam Al-Haj said that 30% of the women demands cannot be achieved in the present time but will be reached in the near future. On her part, Fatma Al-Huraybi said that if all Yemeni women agreed on their rights and on what they want, they will achieve their demands.