August 19, 2012 – SWCN’s Immediate Press release

Elders overruled constitutional provision that grants women’s 30% seats in the Somalia’s   parliament.

As stipulated on the Garowe II Principles and later ratified in the constitution on August 17, 2012, the 30% quota was granted to Somali women to represent their constituents in the national parliament. The traditional elders have overruled women’s quota. The list recently released by the Technical Committee shows that the elders selected only 10% women parliamentarians out of the expected 30% quota. The reports also disclosed that closed-door deals had undermined a fair process and had led the interest of women to be sidelined once more.

Thus, Somali women are outraged and considered this a violation of the constitution, and a lack of compliance to a fair process that grants equitable gender representation in the country. Hence, Somali women demand that the constitution and especially the women’s stipulated quota be respected. Somali women also call upon the international community to intervene and support their demand to end this unjust and undemocratic process.

SWCN recommends the following steps:

  • Since the current traditional elders’ selection process is not producing the expected quota, SWCN and its members demand the establishment of an alternate process that grants women’s 30% stipulated quota.
  • SWCN reiterates, as mentioned on its previous press releases, that a selection of the parliamentarians without women’s 30%, quota should not be accepted; these seats should be left vacant until the quota is achieved.
  • SWCN also suggests once the women parliamentarians’ selections are completed, there should be a support for women participants who want to run for positions such as the speaker of parliament or deputy speaker. Also, there should be women appointees at all levels of the new government, including deputy Prime Minister, or the PM, and other executive portfolios in the government.
  • SWCN and its members are also disappointed about the fact that the technical committee didn’t challenge the elders’ avoidance of women’s 30% quota. Thus, we demand the technical committee to address the constitutional violation and pressure the elders to eliminate  the favoritism and discrimination in the selection of parliamentarians process
  • If these approaches fail, SWCN and its members call for all women and enlightened men who support this cause to organize a wider protest inside and outside the country, to show their frustration towards the clear violation of the constitution and the discrimination of women’s rights.

For SWCN campaign, and feedback, please visit either our website at www.; or write to us at


SWCN Public Relations


 The current government and the international community should take a bold action and  commitment to watch over  the women’s quota of 30% out of 275 parliamentarians

July 30, 2012    

Dear Friends of SWCN,

Wednesday, July 25, 2012, the Somalia’s National Constitution Assembly (NCA), composed of 825 delegates, convened in Mogadishu, Somali, to review and make recommendations about the Somalia’s draft Constitution before the final ratification. The NCA delegates are chosen from all Somali clans.

As SWCN mentioned in previous press releases, the new Constitution of the Federal Republic of Somalia ensured the representation of minimum 30% of women to participate in all aspects of the future Somali government. However, an early preliminary observation indicates that the National Assembly Constituent selected by some clan elders and religious leaders are hesitant to accept the constitution as it regards to women and their participation in office.

SWCN believes that the proposed quota of minimum 30% out of 275 ( 82.5) women members of parliament would be achieved successfully, if there is a strong commitment from all involved stakeholders, particularly, the leaders of the current government, the international community, clan elders and religious groups. 

To ensure that the glimpse of hope that Somali women have seen so far should not disappear, we demand from the current government and the international community to take a bold action and commitment to watch over the women’s quota. It is a reality that more and more Somali women are involved in the post-conflict  building of Somalia.

We also applaud the President’s and the Prime Minister’s leadership roles in recently addressing the importance and the legality of honoring women’s 30% quota. We commend some of the presidential candidates who addressed women’s issues, but it will take a strong commitment from them to achieve the proposed quota. SWCN, therefore, recommends that all presidential candidates have to declare their positions on women’s 30% quota.

We encourage SWCN members, friends, and supporters to continue our grassroots campaign by calling and pressuring the members of the National Assembly, the new parliamentarians and the presidential candidates to ensure that women’s quota are respected and materialized.

 For SWCN campaign, please visit our website at www. You can also share your feedback and update of your campaign with us by writing to us at We look forward collaborating with you on this important campaign. Together we succeed.


SWCN Public Relations


 Somali Women Should get their fair share in the Somali political process

July 05, 2012

Dear Friends of SWCN,

We want to inform you that Somali Women’s Circle Network (SWNC) is presently developing new strategies that will address and enhance the representation and the participation of Somali women in the current political process.  We are deeply concerned that women are absent in today’s political decision making of Somalia.

Furthermore, the current political process is led by respected Somali elders who do not recognize women’s role in public affairs and the six signatories of the Roadmap. SWCN, therefore calls for all concerned Somali women and men to stand together to bridge the widening gap caused by disproportionate representation and participation of women in politics. To close the gap  we are asking you to join us in partnership to achieve this goal by:

(a)    Supporting successful transition to a new inclusive and democratic government in Somalia.

(b)   Continuously enhancing the Somali women’s political agenda forward by;

i)      Ensuring equal representation of women and men in the established four technical committees that are facilitating the end of the transitional period;

ii)     Establishing an independent oversight women committee that ensures that women’s 30% quota are met by each clan;

iii)   Opening dialogue with Somali elders in order to seek their understanding of the importance of Somali women’s participation in politics; this would guarantee the successful implementation of the outcomes of the roadmap and the draft constitution;

iv)   Applying the 30% quota not only to the parliament but also at the all levels of the [i]new government including executive positions and ministries;

v)  Establishing a future plan to enhance women’s representation quota to 50%.

With these in mind, we strongly believe that together, we can pave the way for women’s role in tomorrow’s political leadership in Somalia.

We encourage SWCN members, friends, and supporters to launch this campaign by utilizing your unique skills, ideologies and resources to advance Somali women’s call for social and political reform in Somalia. We also believe sharing information and exchanging ideas will strengthen the campaign.

For SWCN campaign, please visit our website at www.

You can also share your feedback and update of your campaign with us by writing to us at

We look forward collaborating with you on this important campaign. Together we succeed.


SWCN Public Relations