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Holder: Are we ready for a female leader?

LISA KING, [email protected]

Holder: Are we ready for a female leader?

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A political scientist is calling for a national debate on whether the country is ready for a female leader.

With the general elections looming and Mia Mottley leading the opposition Barbados Labour Party, Maureen Holder, said: “if we are to have an honest poll what would the results say?”

Holder was delivering the Astor B Watts Lunchtime Lecture at the Democratic Labour Party (DLP), George Street headquarters yesterday.

“So I ask the question, is the nation seriously ready for a female prime minister?  Has this nation given it any serious thought, or is it a case that people are so fed up with the DLP that they feel they have no other choice but to accept the next best alternative?” she asked, adding that the upcoming election was a battle betweengood and evil.

She said she supported women’s rights, equality and justice but did not support women just for the sake of it.

Holder said were she to support a female prime minster among the Barbados Labour Party it would be Dame Billie Miller, who had the experience and the capacity and natural ability to lead, but was no longer visible in active politics.

She said the majority of voters were women, but she did not hear the leading women clamouring for Mottley.

Senator Irene Sandiford Garner, who also attended the lecture, said that as a female politician, as the country’s delegate to the inter-American commission for women said: “I firmly believe that we are ready for a female prime minister and I cannot put words in your mouth, but I do believe that you probably mean not this particular female.” (LK)