Men are still on top in Iceland: Country celebrates electing Europe’s first female-majority parliament… before recount spoils the party
- The initial count had female candidates winning 33 seats out of 63 in parliament
- But hours later, a recount in western Iceland found just 30 seats had been won
- Result would have made it first country in Europe to have more women than men
Iceland briefly celebrated making history by electing Europe’s first female-majority parliament – before a recount found it had just fallen short.
The initial count had female candidates winning 33 seats in the country’s 63-seat parliament.
But hours later, a recount in western Iceland found just 30 seats had been won, a tally previously reached in their 2016 election.
Icelandic Prime Minister Katrin Jakobsdottir talks to supporters of her Left Green Movement at a party event in Reykjavik on September 25, 2021
The result would have made it the first country in Europe to have more women than men in parliament.
But at almost 48 per cent of the total, it is still the highest figure of female politicians in the continent.
Only a handful of countries, none of them in Europe, have a majority of female lawmakers.
According to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, Rwanda leads the world with women making up 61% of its Chamber of Deputies, with Cuba, Nicaragua and Mexico on or just over the 50% mark.
‘The female victory remains the big story of these elections,’ politics professor Olafur Hardarson told local broadcaster RUV after the recount.
The mistakes have not been entirely explained but are thought to be due to human error
Iceland’s voting system is divided into six regions and the recount in western Iceland was held after questions about the number of ballots cast.
The mistakes have not been entirely explained but are thought to be due to human error.
The three parties in the outgoing coalition government led by Prime Minister Katrin Jakobsdottir won a total of 37 seats in Saturday’s vote, two more than in the last election, and appeared likely to continue in power.