Jadranka Kosor: More Women Than it Seems

Total Croatia News

The PM Designate announced an incredible number of women in government and “potential and real women” in ministries. Who are these potential women? Can many hope to be that and is every woman a “potential woman?”

A search is on for women to participate in the Croatian government being made up of the same political ingredients as the last one. But this one will be different as it will be created by a silenced MOST and a louder HDZ with a completely new president. So everything will be new (as if they weren’t in am unsuccessful coalition that was dismissed by Parliament after a few months of squabbles and arguments), with ministers dismissed in Sabor. But they are more than good and deserving so they will be transferred to the new government. Their names a secret, with only, Zdravko Marić certain, the former Finance Minister (also the potential PM Designate after the planned Orešković takedown), future minister and Deputy PM.

As the public got wind of information about the new government to be made up of mostly HDZ and MOST men (which made that same public rear itself on weak hind legs), pink balloons with promises were released on the new government stating there will be “more women than it seems.”
So what is the situation with female candidates? The possible representation of women in the government can be seen by the representation of women in Parliament. The number is crushing as the electoral lists for the Parliament had very few women, placed at the back of the lists. The smallest number in the last ten years.

However, among the announced women who could become ministers are mostly not women who were on electoral lists. So, it has been announced ministers could become women who didn’t go through the electoral process, were not elected to Parliament and have no electoral legitimacy. A consequence of the choices and decisions of parliamentary parties chiefs, all men.

So the PM Designate announced an incredible number of women in government and “potential and real women” in ministries. Who are these potential women? Can many hope to be that and is every woman a “potential woman?” Or are potential ones only members of the Designate’s party. As, among five Designate’s women who entered the parliament, one is non-partisan, one fled from another party, one was elected to Parliament but will remain in European Parliament and one sparked with the statement that the former PM is the best ever.

And: who are the “real” women from the Designate’s statement? Are they former ministers? The one that didn’t know how the budget is filled? Or the one who missed the deadline for the tender on personal assistants, and also forgot about the public defender for disabled persons? These women are real, traces of their work will be realistically visible for a while. But, however, no one from the current or future government objected to their work. So they can hope to be part of the new Croatian government.

The new government will have a large ministry dealing with demographics, youth and social issues. Although, demographics and social issued are not connected and many know the demographic image of Croatia can only be changed with systematic work of government with local communities. Only economic growth will enable young people to find work and do what they love and want and strengthen the space for free decisions on founding a family. It is expected a woman will head this ministry as women are always given social issues and family care.

In any case, a real desire for equal participation of women in government could have been demonstrated on the day of the constitution of Croatian Sabor when the majority could have proposed a woman for at least one of their three Deputy Parliament Speaker positions. True, there will be a woman in the two Deputy PS positions reserved for the opposition, but the ruling majority is the one that needs to clearly define the direction in gender equality.

Also, among four Deputy PM positions in government there is no woman in the running so it is clear women are being sought hastily so the image of the government at its start would be improved and there would be “more women than it seems.”

In the meantime, Croatia hasn’t ratified the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence. Women’s NGO’s have warned of this, it is spoken about at gatherings no one follows or records and where party women don’t participate anymore. Those that should be part of the government and be the ornament of democracy, as it usually happens in our young Croatian male democracy.

The Council of Europe convention needs to be ratified in Parliament, but someone needs to make the motion, push and lobby to place it on the agenda. It would be logical for the Convention ratification to the proposed by the Croatian government that will have “more women than it seems.”

I hear one of them will be a woman I selected for my minister in the 2010 government. But this will not be mentioned as I currently don’t belong to “potential and real women” according to the classification of potential and real men who tailor government.

For the original and more from Jadranka Kosor’s blog, click here.


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