The Federated States of Micronesia is a small island state with a population of approximately 115,000 people. FSM comprises four states - Chuuk, Kosrae, Pohnpei and Yap. FSM has a national Congress, comprising 14 Senators. Four Senators are elected from the four States, who serve 4 year terms, and 10 Senators are elected from single-member constituencies for 2 year terms. FSM has a presidential system, though unusually, the President is selected by national Senators themselves, from amongst the four State senators elected to the national Congress.
On March 3 2015 the four states of the Federated States of Micronesia went to the polls to elect the 19th Congress. There were reportedly 34 candidates that stood in the elections vying for the 14 seats in Congress, but it is unclear how many of them were women candidates. Of the 14 Senators that were elected, there are currently no women in the national Congress. In fact, FSM is one of the only countries in the world to have never elected a women into its national legislature.
Each State of FSM also has its own State Congress. The State legislatures vary in size:
- Kosrae Congress - 14 Senators
- Pohnpei Congress - 23 Senators
- Yap Congress - 10 Senators
- Chuuk Congress - 28 Delegates (House of Representatives) + 10 Senators (Upper House)
Amongst the 85 member in the four State legislatures, only the state of Pohnpei has an elected women member, Hon Magdalena Walters.
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