Port Louis, Mauritius — The poem Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge reads, “Water, water everywhere. Nor any drop to drink.” These words ring all too true when one reflects on the current turmoil and persistent gender inequality we are witnessing in Mauritius. Women are represented almost everywhere in various public and private sectors, but remain invisible at the negotiation tables of political parties.
The two major political parties the Labour Party (LP) and the Mouvement Militant Mauricien (MMM) have formed an alliance. At their joint press conference on this past Saturday, there was not one mention of gender in their nine priorities officially announced by both leaders, Dr. Navin Ramgoolam and Paul Berenger. Only when Mauritians see the party list for the general elections, will they know if the LP/MMM Alliance slogan, “Un peuple uni, Un pays moderne (A united nation, a modern country) will become a reality.