Activists demand 50% quota for women candidates

Source – March 8, 2004
International Women's Day commemoration in Semarang (Berita Jowo)
International Women's Day commemoration in Semarang (Berita Jowo)

Triyono Wahyu Sudibyo, Semarang – Scores of women’s activists have demanded that the quota of women representatives in the National Election Commissions list of legislative candidates be raised to 50 per cent. They consider that the current 30 per cent quota has not been effective.

These demands were articulated by women from the International Women’s Day Joint Committee at the water fountain on Jalan Pahlawan in Semarang, Central Java, on Monday March 8. They arrived at the water fountain shortly after activists from the Prosperity and Justice Party had left the location.

The committee is made up of the Indonesian Women’s Coalition, the National Student League for Democracy, the Muslim Student United Action Front and New Indonesian Communist Party.

They took up the issue of why women had only been given a 30 per cent quota. This was considered to be too small and furthermore the political parties have not been serious in fulfilling it. “30 per cent? Why not 50 per cent?” one women wrote on a poster.

As well as demanding a higher quota, the committee also called for all regulations and laws which discriminate against women to be annulled. (iy)

[Translated by James Balowski.]