Just a statistic?

Equal representation of women in politics is one of the major things that our nation has been working on for the past few years. We have witnessed changes in this regard, especially with the national election of 2015 that took place On May 24. This election involved more women compared to previous years; many female candidates had run for election at regional and federal levels, representing their parties.

We should not consider women’s achievements as an act of generosity by men or as part of the affirmative action set by the law. Rather, it is a right that we women deserve to exercise simply because we are human. It is a result of our hard work. So I say, the way we seek gender equality for women should not blind us from the fact that we are individually “human”.

It was disturbing to me that when political parties were campaigning, they shared the number of female members. This is because I am not concerned only about the number of women participating, but rather the real contribution and change that women bring to the system. Women’s participation should not be part of a statistics report but rather how they are working to bring about real change. The world being male dominated means that women as individuals have a hard time succeeding despite the skills, knowledge and experience they may possess because they are still perceived as fragile and incapable.

There are many strong women, but their achievements are not seen as the community’s achievement, but rather only women’s achievement. When I say I am a woman, it does not mean I am not human. Thus, when a woman wins an election or achieves her goals, she should not be celebrated because she is a woman who made it that far. But she should be celebrated as a human because she made it in this world where both men and women compete. When a woman is running for an election, she is not only running as a woman; she has to be able to argue and win over men who are competing against her. The minute she reaches the position she ran for, no affirmative action will take her or those who have elected her forward. She needs to be the candidate we as a group cultivated and be capable of doing the job. She needs to develop the knowledge, skills and the qualities that we want in those who represent and lead us.

As a young woman, I hope that we women pause and see what we have contributed and what else we can contribute, not just as a group of women but also as women who want to make a difference in this world. Rather than concentrating simply on ending male domination, let us all work together to achieve something that will leave a mark for future generations of women and men.

So these women who win elections should not be silent watchers but should be speaking out. They should not only be fighting for women’s representation in the different legislations to come, but they should also be the voice of both men and women who have elected them. The people that they represent have diverse needs not only as a group of men and women in a community but rather as individuals with different rights and obligations.

The political parties should not only let women run for the election but also support them in the future endeavor that awaits them. As political offices have been dominated by men, we all, men and women both, need to adjust the manner in which we treat and see our fellow men and women. Let us help these women not only achieve the dream of all women to be equal to men but also the dreams that they have as individuals for their country.

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