The topic of gender in Mauritian politics is not new. Indeed, many, or even most countries, do not fail to address how gender affects politics.
In Mauritius, it is still being discussed, especially to find explanations for the weak involvement of women in politics. We are talking about how one’s experience and political participation can differ depending on one’s gender.
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Women in Mauritius make up more than half of the population, yet we see very few women in politics or the national assembly. Women are still more educated and free to participate in politics, so why the under-representation? To understand the situation better, it is necessary to look at the elements contributing to this problem.
Men dominate politics, but it is not exclusively a male domain. To say today that politics is a field only for men would be an outdated statement. Women are just as capable as men of being political and contributing to the good of society. Indeed, we live in a modern world where women are successful in education, are independent, and some laws enforce their rights, but this does not mean that the number of women in politics has increased. In Mauritius, the men hold power and make the decisions. It is the patriarchal culture that affects the position of women politicians.
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The Republic of Mauritius has a reputation for being a democratic and politically stable country. Fair and free elections occur every five years, and hardly anything disturbs the smooth running of the elections. Everyone is free to have a political opinion and support any political party. As for politics in Mauritius, it is easy to understand.
In Mauritius, the President is the head of state. The President is elected by the National Assembly as required by the Mauritian Constitution and functions as a ceremonial figurehead. Not only does he uphold the constitution, but when a bill is submitted to him, he has to signify his assent or rejection of the bill. The Prime Minister is the head of the government. As for the Prime Minister, he is the head of the government. He presides over the Council of Ministers and appoints its members. Moreover, the position of the Prime Minister is powerful since the Prime Minister is also the Minister of Defence and Home Affairs.
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