- In Sierra Leone, women are less likely than men to have post-secondary education (7% vs. 20%) and more likely to have no formal schooling at all (46% vs. 34%) (Figure 1).
- Large majorities of Sierra Leoneans say women should have the same rights as men to own and inherit land (78%) (Figure 2) and to be elected to public office (71%).
- But support for equal rights to a job is considerably weaker – 56% for, 39% against (Figure 3).
- Eight in 10 respondents (82%) think a woman will gain standing in the community if she runs for office. But more than four in 10 (42%) consider it likely that others in the community will criticise or harass her, and 21% think she will probably face problems with her family (Figure 4).
- Three-fourths (76%) of Sierra Leoneans say the government is doing “fairly well” or “very well” in promoting equal rights and opportunities for women (Figure 5).
- But almost two-thirds (64%) want it to do more (Figure 6).
A majority of Sierra Leoneans say the government is doing a good job of promoting equal rights and opportunities for women, but most want it to do more, the latest Afrobarometer survey shows.
Citizens endorse equal rights for women to own and inherit land, to get a job, and to run for public office. Most think that a woman who runs for office will gain standing in the community, but a significant number also consider it likely that others in the community will criticise or harass her.
Believers in equal rights for women are celebrating Sierra Leone’s just-passed Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment (GEWE) Act, which mandates equal pay for equal work, maternity leave, financial inclusion, and a 30% quota of women in government appointments and private institutions with more than 25 employees.