The Maldives High Court supports gender quota for women in local council

High Court of Maldives | Photo: Mihaaru

Malé, Maldives – The high court of Maldives has supported the decision by the Elections Commission (EC) to reserve seats on the council for women and subsequently preventing men from contesting.

The former youth wing leader of the Jumhooree Party, Moosa Anwar,filed the case claiming that the law discriminates against men and cited article 26(b) and (c) of the constitution which states that every citizen over 18 years of age has the right to run for public office.

The amendment to the decentralization of administrative divisions is in line with the government’s decision to apportion 33% of council seats to women in an effort to ensure gender equality.

The five presiding judges, Mohamed Niyaz, Ali Sameer, Abdul Rauf Ibrahim, Hussain Shaheed and Hathif Hilmy unanimously supported the EC decision.

Moosa Anwar initially filed the court case at the supreme court, however, the case was rejected and subsequently filed at the high court.