One of the three Government senators sworn in last week wants to see more women as Parliamentarians here.
Three men – Jomo Thomas, Luke Browne, and Camillo Gonsalves – were sworn in as senators for the ruling Unity Labour Party last week.
And Gonsalves, son of Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves, in his maiden address to parliament highlight the disproportionate ratio among the sexes.
Of the nine Opposition parliamentarians, only one – Senator Vynnette Frederick – is female.
On the government side, where there are eight elected MPs, four senators and the Attorney General, only the AG, Judith Jones-Morgan and Minister of Education and Deputy Prime Minister, Girlyn Miguel are females.
The Clerk of the House is also female.
Sen. Gonsalves told Parliament that he understand that the original meaning of the word senate is “a body of wise, old men”.
“Speaking of the original word of senator — of wise old men, it is unfortunate that on both sides — Honourable Prime Minister, Honourable Leader of the Opposition — that we seem to have taken that to heart, because there are so few women in the Parliament, as currently constituted,” Sen. Gonsalves said.
“I am sure that the Honourable Sen. Frederick would love to look across the aisle and see many more women on this side of the aisle, as would the Honourable Member for Marriaqua (Miguel), as would the Honourable Attorney General, as would I.
“When we look in the audience, in the strangers’ gallery, we see an almost even balance of men and women,” the senator further observed.
“But that is not reflected in the Parliament. And I would hate the young ladies who are here from school to think that the Parliament is not something to which they can aspire,” he said in reference to a student of the Central Leeward Secondary School who came to Parliament to observe the proceedings.
“And I hope that both of us also give some thought to that other constitutional provision that was defeated: to have at least a minimum number, or for representational purposes, of women in the Parliament,” Gonsalves further said.