A woman’s place is in the House – the House of Parliament: Chpt 4 – Advancing Women’s Representation in Tonga
Since women were granted the right to vote and stand as political candidates in 1951, only four women have been voted into Parliament as People’s Representatives in the Legislative Assembly. Women have very recently been represented by appointment to Ministerial Positions of the Crown and by election to Town Officer, and by employment in decision-making levels of the public sector.
The composition of the Parliament disadvantages women by restricting eligibility for seats such that only nine seats out of the total 33 seats of the house reserved for People’s Representatives represent potential seats for women MPs. Processes of socialisation and attitudes further limit the tendency of voters to choose women candidates, though this is changing. Moreover, within the private sector women are advancing and there are successful businesses led by women including larger institutions.