The report, which shows the gap between men and women narrowing more slowly than hoped, indicates that the world is not yet on track to achieve gender equality in politics by 2030.
According to the report, Rwanda has been ranked the country in the world with most women in parliament as of 1st November 2021. The East African nation has 49 women in its parliament as against 31 men.
Rwanda is followed directly by Cuba, Nicaragua and Mexico. Based on data from the report, there is a pattern showing that European countries are leading the charts.
Secretary-General, IPU, Martin Chugong, said the global average of women in parliamentary positions now sits at 25.5 per cent, reaching over a quarter for the first time in history.
“While we celebrate and welcome this all-time high, we feel that progress is painstakingly, or even excruciatingly, slow. At the current rate, it will take another 50 years before we can achieve gender parity in parliament. And, of course, we all agree that this is not tenable; it’s not acceptable,” said Chugong.
The top five countries with the highest number of female politicians in Africa include Rwanda, South Africa, Namibia, Senegal, and Ethiopia. Rwanda is the only African country to rank in the IPU’s top 10 over the last few years.
Speaking on why many African countries do not rank in the IPU’s top 10 over the last few years, Chugong clarified that this isn’t because African countries have decreased their representation of women but because other countries have instead increased theirs.
“The fact that you’ll have fewer African countries in the top 10 does not mean that they are not doing well. It’s simply because other countries have moved up the rankings.
“So, as other countries rise to the top, others are dropping, but it does not mean that they’re not doing well when it comes to gender equality,” he said.