Rwanda: Balancing Gender Quotas and an Independent Judiciary

in Gretchen Bauer and Josephine Dawuni,(eds) Gender and the Judiciary in Africa: From obscurity to Parity?" – Routledge (2016)

in Gretchen Bauer and Josephine Dawuni,(eds) Gender and the Judiciary in Africa: From obscurity to Parity?" – Routledge (2016)

17 Pages Posted: 23 Mar 2015 Last revised: 31 Mar 2016

Date Written: 2016

Abstract

In 2015 Rwanda ranked first in the world for women's representation in an elected lower house of parliament, moving from the position of 37th it held in 2000. The same year, women made fifty percent of Ministers in President Kagame's government. This increase has come as the result of the Rwanda's constitutional requirement that women should be granted at least thirty percent of posts in decision-making organs. While this quota requirement may be easy to implement in political and administrative positions, its implementation in the judiciary is not without challenges. Unlike the legislative and executive branches, the Judiciary's need for independence and more objective criteria in the recruitment makes it difficult to incorporate subjective political considerations such as quotas and affirmative action. This is makes it, therefore, interesting to examine how the number of women judges moved from 9.1% in 1998 to 39% in 2014 and the extent to which the application of quota requirements reflected or affected the independence of the Rwanda's Judiciary.

Suggested Citation

Kamatali, Jean-Marie, Rwanda: Balancing Gender Quotas and an Independent Judiciary (2016). in Gretchen Bauer and Josephine Dawuni,(eds) Gender and the Judiciary in Africa: From obscurity to Parity?" – Routledge (2016), in Gretchen Bauer and Josephine Dawuni,(eds) Gender and the Judiciary in Africa: From obscurity to Parity?" – Routledge (2016), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2582979

Jean-Marie Kamatali (Contact Author)

Ohio Northern University ( email )

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