Empowering Women Politicians in Pakistan: Views from Within

Women parliamentarians and local legislators in Pakistan still face a significant uphill battle to establish or deepen their political careers, despite recent gains such as the Election Law 2017 which mandated parties to issue 5 per cent of their tickets for general seats to women. Even with constitutional protections, women’s entry into the political arena is still subject to religious and ideological debate and, when they do manage to enter this arena, their personal credibility and physical safety is subject to attack. A recent survey of women politicians flags up both significant challenges such as silencing and verbal harassment and areas for improvement, particularly in the cross-party women’s caucuses.