The Proposed Gender Quota in Lebanon: Legal Crisis or Democratic Transformation?


gender quota

How to Cite

El-Makary, M. (1). The Proposed Gender Quota in Lebanon: Legal Crisis or Democratic Transformation?. Al-Raida Journal, 39-52.


Fifty years after the consolidation of equality between men and women with respect to the right to vote and run for public office with the 1953 Electoral Law, the reality of women’s representation in parliament remains far removed from democratic ideals and the aspirations of civil society. As the late Lebanese lawyer and human rights activist Laure Moughaizel stated for a woman to enter parliament in Lebanon, she must be clad in black. Moughaizel’s statement is more true today than any time in the past, considering that since 1963 only nine women have joined parliament, most often to fill the seats left empty by a dead husband or a father, or else through kinship relations.

Alarmingly, since 2005 Lebanon has ranked 122nd worldwide for women’s participation in national parliaments (Inter Parliamentary Union, 2005), and this behind Iraq which ranked 28, Tunis 36, Sudan 70, Syria 85, Morocco 91, Algeria 115, and Jordan 118, tying with the Libyan Arab Republic, and coming in at two ranks ahead of the Islamic Republic of Iran.


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