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Only one woman elected in the Cook Islands

NZ Parliamentarians' group disappointed only one woman elected in the Cook Islands

Wellington, 19 November 2010: The New Zealand Parliamentarians' group on Population and Development (NZPPD) is disappointed to hear the news that only one out of the nine women running in the Cook Islands elections this week won a seat in Parliament.

General elections were held in the Cook Islands on 17. November 2010 and were won by the Cook Islands Party, winning a total of 15 of the 24 seat seats contested. Ngamau Munokoa managed to hold on to her Nikao-Panama seat, but will now be on the Opposition benches. Only seven women have ever been elected to Parliament in the Cook Islands since the country became self-governing in 1965.

"It is very disappointing that women don't have a higher representation in parliament in the Cook Islands. Women's voices need to be heard at the highest level to ensure decisions made for the country are based on the perspectives and views of both women and men. It is also important that issues important to women are given attention at this level" says Dr. Jackie Blue, NZPPD Chair.

Background

The NZPPD is cross - party, with currently 44 members representing just fewer than 40 percent of all New Zealand MPs. The group has provided a forum for New Zealand parliamentarians to engage and act on international population and development issues for eleven years. The NZPPD has a particular focus on the Pacific region, where the population and development challenges remain great. Family Planning International houses the NZPPD Secretariat.

ENDS

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