Solomon Islands has a population of approximately 590,000 people. The national Parliament has 50 members. Elections are held every 4 years. The electoral system uses a first-past-the-post system, which has made it very difficult for women to get elected.
In 2008, the Solomon Islands Government mandated the Constituency Boundaries Commission to review the number of MPs currently elected to Parliament. This was used as an entry-point for women’s groups to propose the introduction of reserved seats for women. The proposal suggested in 2008 was to introduce 10 reserved seats for women – 1 seat for each of Solomon Islands nine provinces and 1 seat for the capital city of Honiara. The proposal did not attract the support of the Cabinet. However, following the 2010 national elections, the new Government indicated in its Policy Statement that the Government would look at options for women’s reserved seats as part of a broader electoral boundaries review. This work has not yet progressed.
Since Independence, only three women MPs have ever been elected to the Solomon Islands Parliament, Hon Hilda Kari in the 1980s, Hon Vika Lusibaea who was elected in a by-election for her husband’s seat in August 2012 and in 2014 general elections Honourable Freda Soria Comua won the Temotu Vatud seat.
Hon Freda Soria Comua
Party: People’s Alliance Party
Electorate: Temotu Vatud
Political Status: Member of Parliament