On October 16, something remarkable happened in Ethiopia, a country not exactly known for gender equality. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed announced that his cabinet is now, for the first time, half women. The country has also gained its first female defense minister—and a woman has been named Ethiopia’s first minister of peace.
“Our women ministers will disprove the adage that women can’t lead,” Abiy said in Parliament. And lead they will, with the possible added bonus of their gender allowing them to make priorities of issues that may escape male ministers, such as maternal health, economic marginalization, and basic human rights for women.
While it doesn’t seem far-fetched to have gender-equal governments—or those that have a majority of women, they are extremely rare. The U.S. House of Representatives is made up of only 20 percent women. (Although more women are running for political office in the U.S. right now than ever before.) Why women remain outside the doors of political power is more nuanced than simply attributing it to sexism. And the attempts to remedy the problem are varied.
Full article at Women’s Media Center’s website. Date of publication: 24/10/2018