New Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will double the number of female frontbenchers and exclude a number of senior ministers when he announces his new cabinet on Sunday. Fresh from participating in last week's coup that deposed Tony Abbott, who attracted widespread criticism for including just one woman in a cabinet of 19, Turnbull hopes to heal the bitter divisions in his party.
It is expected that Abbott loyalist Joe Hockey will be replaced as treasurer by Social Services Minister Scott Morrison. And other former Howard government ministers such as Kevin Andrews, Ian Macfarlane, and Eric Abetz will all be dumped, SBS news reported.
But several women in the outer ministry, including Michaelia Cash and Kelly O'Dwyer are in line for a promotion. Turnbull will announce his cabinet on Sunday, and has already indicated that it will include more women.
"There is no greater enthusiast than me for seeing more women in positions of power and influence in Parliament, in ministries right across the country; I can assure you of that. I am very committed to that," he said.
Turnbull has previously identified himself as a feminist as far back as 1988. In stark contrast, Abbott was criticised for a series of sexists comments including saying that people should vote for him because he has "not bad looking" daughters and that women were "physiologically unsuited to leadership".
The new leader of the Liberal Party, however, was recently forced to brush off a leaked document which showed that he was the worst performer when it came to appointing women to boards while he was the minister for communications.
Polls published recently show that the next Australian government will be a coalition between the Liberal and Labour party. The new ministers will be sworn in on Monday.