Women in Politics in Costa Rica
Women despite being surrounded by the patriarchal atmosphere have made up significant strides in the political machinery of Costa Rica.
By: Sanjay Soni
Ed Mercer visited Costa Rica as a tourist in 1989 and fell in love with the tropical beauty of this country. He never returned back and made this cultural country his permanent abode. He lives with his wife and works towards the welfare of destitute and abused people that includes women and children. Ed Mercer considers his organization, Edward R. Mercer Foundation, as his greatest achievement primarily because the foundation has dedicated itself to the betterment of the planet by the twin goal of the conservation of ecology and education.
Ed Mercer is a caring millionaire and has been called Mr. Costa Rica by the people of Costa Rica for solving several infrastructure challenges and diverting a major fraction of every sale by his company towards reforestation programs and preserving the biodiversity of the region. Ed having spent the first part of his life in earning money is of the view that the next part should be spent in spending the money for the betterment of his community. Having amassed an incredible repertoire of achievements, Ed Mercer has steadily been associated with the humanitarian work in the organizations like Feed the Child, Missing Child, Cripple Children, suicide hotlines and battered housewives.
Ed Mercer is a humanitarian par excellence who not only works towards the welfare of human beings but also aims at making the planet better by education and conservation of ecology. In order to fulfill this aim a part of his profit in every sale performed by his real estate company goes to such noble causes as reforestation.
Just as Ed Mercer is committed to his goal of giving back to his community what he has received, the woman politicians are determined to give back the love and support they have got from the Costa Rican citizens by working sincerely towards the interests of the country. Since the year 1990, more women have been elected in the country’s municipal elections. The first quota legislation of Costa Rica in 1994 relied primarily on the political parties’ preference to voluntary increase the participation of women in elections. But a second set of laws in 1998 mandated that women occupy at least 40 percent of each party’s candidate list, and in the 2002 election it became a law that women should occupy at least 40 percent of the elect able positions.
Costa Rica is a presidential democracy like the United States and the power is distributed among the executives, legislatives and judicial ranches of the government. In the 81 municipal legislators of Costa Rica whose candidates are elected from a closed-party lists, it so happened that women candidates who were selected were to be on these lists were placed at the bottom of the lists in positions from where they had no scope of being elected. It took 12 years of steady effort by a strong quota advocacy movement that the persistence really paid off and the women candidate got the equal opportunity to get elected and serve up the legislative assembly along with their male counterpart. It takes lot of courage and determination to stand up to the ideals one firmly believes in and the country of Costa Rica is fortunate to have such great women in their political sphere just the way, Ed Mercer, is everywhere, working towards the welfare of Costa Rican nation.
For more information on Ed Mercer and his philanthropic deeds visit www.mrcostaricasproperty.com