Two Saudi women were elected to a chamber of commerce in Jeddah, in a landmark development in the kingdom, officials confirmed Wednesday. Lama al-Sulaiman and Nashwa Taher were elected to the Jeddah Trade and Industry Chamber after the polls were opened to women for the first time, the officials said.
According to the AP, the two women will become members of an 18-person board that previously was for men only. There are just 100 women among the some 3,880 chamber members who cast ballots. Many voters said they had voted for women candidates. They said they had picked female candidates to encourage women’s participation in public life, Arab News reported.
It should be noted that almost all the eligible voters had taken part in the two-day elections. A Saudi source said that the higher number of voters this time was partly due to the the participation of women candidates for the first time.