Reserving Special Seats for Women in Parliament: Issues and Obstacles

"The ''representativeness'' of institutions of political representation in gender terms have featured in a number of studies. The base argument is that Parliament should be a microcosm of the nation as a whole. Hamilton opined: ''it is said to be necessary that all classes of citizens should have some of their own numbers in the representative body in order that their feelings and interests may be better understood and attended to.'' The contortions in political representation, particularly relating to women, have become increasingly unacceptable, and the call for reform continues to resound. This paper analyses the perimeters, the causative factors and measures which may be adopted to enhance women's political representation in Ghana. Some contextual factors which militate against women's political participation are discussed and a number of policy recommendations made."