Gender Quotas Database

See data for special areas Taiwan and Kosovo



Eastern Africa

Rwanda has a Bicameral parliament with legislated quotas for the single/lower house and upper house and at the sub-national level. 49 of 80 (61%) seats in the Chambre des Députés / Chamber of Deputies are held by women.

At a glance

Structure of parliament Bicameral

Are there legislated quotas

For the Single / Lower house? Yes
For the Upper house? Yes
For the Sub-national level? Yes

Are there voluntary quotas?

Adopted by political parties? No
Is there additional information? Yes

Single / Lower House

Chambre des Députés / Chamber of Deputies

Upper House

Sénat / Senate

Quota at the Sub-National Level

Voluntary Political Party Quotas*

* Only political parties represented in parliament are included. When a country has legislated quotas in place, only political parties that have voluntary quotas that exceed the percentage/number of the national quota legislation are presented in this table.

Additional information

Rwanda adopted a new Constitution in 2003. In addition to constituting a mandatory minimum 30 per cent gender quota in all decision-making bodies, the Constitution explicitly recognizes the responsibility of political organizations to ‘participate in the education of citizens on politics based on democracy and elections and operate in such a manner as to ensure that women and men have equal access to elective offices’ (Article 52, Constitution, Amendment 2 of 8 December 2005).

In 2007, the Law on Political Organizations and Politicians was amended, establishing that party lists for all elective offices must contain at least 30 per cent women candidates. However, the law does not contain any provisions regarding the rank order of women candidates. Following this amendment and in combination with the 24 reserved seats for women, the Rwandan Chamber of Deputies reached a worldwide record in the 2008 legislative elections, as 56.25 per cent of the elected deputies were women. This positive record was repeated in the 2013 legislative elections, when women constituted 63.75 per cent of the total number of elected deputies.

Rwanda’s remarkable progress in increasing women’s political participation and representation in the post- genocide period is largely credited to the introduction of these electoral special measures, as well as other legal acts such as the law for the prohibition of all forms of discrimination and sectarianism, and the Code of Conduct of Political Organizations and Their Members (adopted by the National Consultative Forum of Political Organizations in Rwanda in 2005). The code promotes rules and regulations, discipline and integrity, and governs all political activities in Rwanda.


Legal Sources:

  • Constitution of Rwanda - Link
  • Law Governing Elections (amended through 2021) - Link
  • Law governing political organizations and politicians (amended through 2018) - Link


Additional reading

  • See the latest updates on Rwanda on iKNOW Politics
  • UN Women. (August 13, 2018). Revisiting Rwanda five years after record-breaking parliamentary elections.
  • Powley, E. (2008). Defending Children's Rights: The Legislative Priorities of Rwandan Women Parliamentarians, The Initiative for Inclusive Security, A Program of Hunt Alternatives Fund
  • Wallace, C., Haerpfer, C. & Abbott, P. (2008). Women in Rwandan politics and society. doi:10.2753/IJS0020-7659380406
  • Hansson, F. (2007). Constitution-Making Explanations to Gender Quotas. A Case Study of the Introduction of Reserved Seats for Women in the Rwandan Parliament. Master Thesis, Uppsala University.
  • Longman, T. (2006). Rwanda: Achieving equality or serving an authoritarian state? in G. Bauer and H. E. Briton (eds.), Women in African Parliaments. Boulder, CO: Lynne Reinner Publishers.
  • Schwartz, H. (2004). Women's representation in the Rwandan Parliament. Master Thesis, Dept. of Political Science, Gothenburg University.
  • Powley, E. (2003). Strengthening Governance: The Role of Women in Rwanda’s Transition, paper presented at the Women Waging Peace Policy Commission. [September 2003]

Explore more resources: Africa | Global

Know about useful additional reading for Rwanda? Tell us!

Submit feedback

Submit questions or comments about the Data or Tool

How did you find out about this? What do you like about it? What did you expect but did not find in using the Data or Tool?

To see how we handle your personal data, please read our Privacy Policy.

Close tooltip