Dubai- Massader News
Libya’s first woman foreign minister, Najla el-Mangoush, will be sworn in next week as part of a new unity government, a rare female voice at the top table whose appointment many Libyan women welcomed on Thursday, according to Reuters.
Mangoush, a lawyer who had a role in the transitional council that briefly governed Libya after its 2011 uprising, will be joined by four other women in the cabinet, including Halima Abdulrahman as justice minister.
“I think this is a win for all of us women in Libya. I hope it’s a first step to going further: a woman reaching head of government,” said Afia Mohammed, 34, a pastry maker in Tripoli, adding it would encourage more women to enter politics.
Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibeh’s interim government emerged through a United Nations talks process and is mandated to unify Libya’s divided state institutions and oversee national elections in December.
The 75 Libyan delegates selected by the U.N. to take part in those talks laid out a commitment for the new government to include women in 30% of senior government roles, including in top cabinet posts.
Women represent only 15% of the posts in Dbeibeh’s cabinet but the proportion will rise when deputy ministers are appointed, he has said.
Elham Saudi, a lawyer and talks delegate, said: “It’s a stepping stone towards fuller representation.”
She said the quota was a result of women in the forum being “absolutely relentless on this point” despite having big differences on other political issues.