The Egyptian constitution recognises that women have the same rights as men to participate in decision-making positions, and its article 180 grants women a quarter of the seats in the local councils. Despite of this, there is a need to enhance women’s representation in public life, especially in the local councils.
The National Association for the Deference of Rights and Freedoms (NADRF) has been selected to coordinate the Egyptian local cluster of gender equality actors© in 2017 and, as such, it will mobilize key stakeholders in Luxor’s Governorate so as to enhance women’s access to local councils.
Through consultations and meetings, NADRF will analyse the constraints that prevent women candidates to becoming members of local councils. The research will focus on women’s participation in politics as voters and candidates, and the challenges which they face when they become a member in a local council such as, men’s reluctance to consider women as equals.
With this in mind, a conference entitled “For effective women’s participation” will be held on March 2 and 3, 2017 in Luxor. The event will gather the media, local authorities, and parliament’s members who represent Luxor governorate, political parties, NGOs, unions and other public figures to discuss on how to support women’s participation in the local councils and in the political life.
Building on all the information collected throughout this conference and the upcoming dialogues, NADRF will elaborate a diagnosis, and will propose a field project to address the problems identified in the diagnosis.
This pilot action is framed within the project "Strengthening the capacities of the actors working for gender equality" which is funded by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development in synergy with the Euro-Mediterranean Women’s Foundation’s mission and objectives. The project "Strengthening the capacities of the actors working for gender equality" sets up, each year, local clusters of gender equality actors in 7 Southern Mediterranean countries (1 per each country). Each local cluster gathers associations, research and education institutions, local authorities, companies, syndicates, and media working in favour of gender equality in a specific territory to discuss a specific theme.
This platform is part of the Axis 1 “Strengthening the capacities of equality actors” of the Priority Solidarity Fund “Women for the future in the Mediterranean” funded by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development and led by the European Institute of the Mediterranean, in the framework of the project “Developing Women’s Empowerment” labelled by the Union for the Mediterranean.