by Fabian Hakalits – EM TV, Buka
The number of women contesting the third Autonomous Bougainville Government Election has increased this year.
According to the Bougainville Acting Electoral Commissioner, George Manu, the increase is attributed to more awareness being conducted by various organisations, for women to participate in politics.
This third ABG General Election sees 34 women candidates contesting for their regional and constituency seats.
These women are part of the 342 candidates across the forty constituencies, who nominated, to contest this year’s election. This includes nine presidential candidates.
Bougainville Women’s Federation has been advocating for more women in politics. However, Executive Director, Barbara Tanne, also condemned verbal attacks by men on women contesting constituency seats, saying it’s their democratic rights.
For women, this year’s election is critical. It’s time for a change. This was the message from Sr Lorrain Garasu from the Nazareth Rehabilitation Centre, Chabai and Helen Hakena, Executive Director of the Leitana Nehan Women’s Development Agency.