In Sri Lanka women constitute less than 6% of Parliament, 5% of Provincial Councils and 2% in Local Councils. These statistics are the lowest in South Asia and Sri Lanka is the only country in the region without a quota for women in Local Councils. One of the main reasons for such low representation has been the reluctance of political parties to give sufficient nominations to women candidates. The next Local Council elections are due soon and WMC with a partnership of organizations in collaboration with the Ministry of Women’s Empowerment is now hoping to work to increase nominations for women at these elections. The aim is to increase nominations for women to at least 20% in 50 party lists in local government electorates in 5 selected districts.
The partner organizations are The Women and Media Collective, The International Center for Ethnic Studies, the Women’s Resource Center (Kurunegala), The Women’ Development Center (Badulla), The Sarvodaya Women’s Movement, The Uva Wellassa Farmer Women’s Organization (Moneragala) and Viluthu. The project will be conducted in the following districts. Colombo, Badulla, Moneragala, Kurunegala,Galle and Trincomalee.