Increasing women’s political representation: a discussion on current reforms

A consultation with Kare Vollan, an expert on electoral reforms, was held yesterday to discuss the prospects of increasing political representation of women in parliament in the current context of constitutional and electoral reforms. For the first time the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, Ranil Wickremesinghe has proposed reforms that will ensure a substantive increase in the number of women at local government going beyond mere nominations. In light of this Women and Media Collective together with the Centre for Policy Alternatives organised the consultation to discuss the legislative representation of women in Sri Lanka at the local, provincial and national levels.

Kare Vollan is an internationally renowned expert on electoral systems from Norway. He serves as an advisor to the Venice Commission and has worked in Bosnia, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Fiji and a number of other countries. Since 2008 he has made regular visits to Nepal to assist the Constituent Assembly and the Elections Commission in developing an inclusive electoral system for the country. He worked closely with several international organizations in the country including UNDP’s Support for Participatory Constitution Building in Nepal (SPCBN) programme, which was headed from 2010 to 2014 by Rohan Edrisinha a founder Director of the Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA).