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This page collects stories on developments throughout the Pacific in promoting women in politics. Because many news sites in the Pacific archive their stories after a period of time, we have replicated the stories in full on this page, to keep an archive on efforts and article in the region. We thank all Pacific news colleagues for their contributions in sharing stories on women in politics. If you have a story we have missed, please send it to the PacWIP team on

Francesca Semoso Elected to PNG National Parliament

31st October, 2023

The Autonomous Bougainville Region has voted in their first woman representative into the National Parliament. Pangu candidate, Francesca Semoso, has been declared member elect for the North Bougainville Open seat after passing the absolute majority. Semoso collected 14,851 votes after the 15th exclusion round passing the absolute majority of 14,164 votes. Bougainville President Ismael Toroama...


Francesca Semoso: Bougainville’s first woman MP in PNG’s parliament

31st October, 2023

[30 October 2023] Francesca Semoso will be the third woman member of parliament in the Papua New Guinea (PNG) national parliament after she won the North Bougainville open seat in a by-election last week. The MP-elect also becomes the first woman from Bougainville to win a seat in PNG’s national parliament. The by-election followed the...


APIL congratulates Dr. Merlynn Abello Alfonso as new FSM Senator-Elect

20th April, 2023

APIL Resolution No. 62-BOD-04: Expressing the Association of Pacific Island Legislatures’ genuine congratulations to Merlynn Abello Alfonso M.D. on becoming the first Pohnpeian woman elected to the Congress of the Federated States of Micronesia. WHEREAS, on March 7, 2023, the FSM National Government held its 1 Congressional Election; and 2 WHEREAS, the State of Pohnpei...


Vanuatu women ‘so proud’ of first female MP elected in 14 years

27th October, 2022

[By Jordan Fennell, Broadcast Thu 27 Oct 2022] Vanuatu women have celebrated the election of the country’s first female MP in 14 years.  Gloria Julia King has won a rural seat in Efate, Vanuatu’s main island, becoming the sixth women to sit in Vanuatu’s parliament since independence. Melissa Fare a ni-Vanuatu student living in Australia said that Ms...


Vanuatu Elects Gloria Julia King to Parliament, First Woman MP in 14 Years

26th October, 2022

[By Madeleine Keck,October 26, 2022] For the first time ever, all Pacific nations now have at least one woman parliamentarian. King’s appointment marks the first time every nation in the Pacific has at least one elected woman parliamentarian.  Gloria Julia King has single-handedly ended almost a quarter-century of male rule within the halls of Vanuatu’s...


Vanuatu to welcome first female MP since 2008 after snap election

22nd October, 2022

[21 October 2022] Votes are still being counted in Vanuatu’s snap election, but with the preliminary votes tallied, one change seems certain: Vanuatu’s all-male parliament is no more, with the first woman elected to office since 2008 likely to be announced within days. “I’m excited for Vanuatu women of course,” Julia King said. King looks...


Work underway to get women elected in Vanuatu snap election

26th September, 2022

[Mackenzie Smith: 26 Sep 2022] Vanuatu’s snap election is just weeks away as human rights groups work to get women into parliament, which has been made up of all-men since 2012. The election will be held two years early after parliament was dissolved but observers believe it could level the playing field for women.The polls...


PNG elects two women MPs in National General Election

03rd September, 2022

[By Natalie Whiting, 3 Sep 2022] Two members sitting on opposite sides of Papua New Guinea’s parliament are making waves after the country’s most recent election. They were the first women voted into PNG’s 118-seat parliament in five years.  Kessy Sawang and Rufina Peter may be serving different constituents and different parties, but they share...


Samoa Supreme Court orders Speaker to swear-in three women MPs

11th May, 2022

[By Pita Ligaiula, 11 May 2022] – Samoa Supreme Court has ordered the Speaker of the House to administer the Oath of Allegiance for three additional women Members of Parliament in the Legislative Assembly. The decision by the Court means the Human Rights Protection Party (HRPP) members, Aliimalemanu Alofa Tuuau, Faagasealii Sapoa Feagai and Faatuatua...


NCW says female MPs’ have been a disappointment on women issues in Parl

06th April, 2022

[By Robert Iroga, 6 April 2022]: The National Council of Women (NCW) has expressed its frustration on the four female Members of Parliament describing them as a disappointment in advocating and advancing women issues at the national level. At the same time, they say the women MPs’ had never gone down to listen to their...


Sikilabu becomes first female premier in Solomon Islands

22nd March, 2022

    [By Robert Iroga, 22 March 2022]: Rhoda Sikilabu is the new premier of Isabel Province and also the first female premier in the Solomon Islands. The MPA for Sigana Ward was declared as the new premier this opening after she was unopposed when nominations closed yesterday. “Yes, I can confirm that Rhoda is...


Third PNG Practice Parliament for Women trains women before 2022 election

14th March, 2022

Port Moresby, 14 March 2022: Today, 58 women from across the country came together at the Third Practice Parliament for Women which is being held in Port Moresby. The Practice Parliament is being implemented as a partnership between the Independent Political Parties and Candidates Commission (IPPCC), National Parliament, Department for Community Development and Religion (DFCDR)...