YEMEN
Parliamentary Chamber: Majlis Annowab

ELECTIONS HELD IN 1997

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Chamber:
  Majlis Annowab


Dates of elections / renewal (from/to):

  27 April 1997


Purpose of elections:

  Elections were held for all the seats in Parliament on the normal expiry of the members' term of office.


Background and outcome of elections:

  Following the previous (April 1993) general elections, a civil war broke out in 1994 when the southern region strove to secede from the Republic. Hostilities ended after a few weeks but the lingering scars were still felt in the 1997 elections, when the southern-based Yemeni Socialist Party - the ruling party of the formerly independent People's Democratic Republic of Yemen until May 1990, when the two Yemens merged - boycotted the poll. This absence left the ruling General People's Congress (GPC) and its coalition partner, the islamist Yemeni Congregation for Reform (Islah) as the main contenders for the 301 seats at stake. Altogether 12 parties and more than 2300 candidates, including many independents and 19 women, were in the running.

The Islah group advocated a platform oriented to reform, especially in the administrative and economic fields. The campaign was also marked by a heightened attempt to lure the feminist vote. Polling day saw a large turnout but was marred by incidents of violence. International observers deemed the proceedings generally fair. Final results gave the GPC of President of the Republic Ali Abdullah Saleh 187 seats, and this total was subsequently increased when independents joined its ranks. The Islah of House Speaker Abdulla Bin Husain al-Ahmar again came in second.

On 14 May, President Saleh invited Mr. Farag Said Ben Ghanem to form a new GPC Government. This was done the next day, with Mr. Ghanem taking the post of Prime Minister. The newly elected House held its first session on 18 May.

STATISTICS
Round no 1 (27 April 1997): Elections results  
Number of registered electors 4,637,728
Voters 2,827,261 (60.96%)

Round no 1: Distribution of seats  
Political Group Total
General People's Congress (GPC) 224
Yemeni Congregation for Reform (Islah) 63
Nasserite Unionist Popular Organization 3
Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party 2
Yemeni Socialist Party 2
Independents 5

Comments:
  + two seats still in dispute

Distribution of seats according to sex:  
Men: 299
Women: 2
Percent of women: 0.66


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Copyright 1997 Inter-Parliamentary Union