Aurat Publication & Information Service Foundation
2-Daysí Capacity Building Workshop with office bearers of political parties on of gender discrimination , Lahore


2-Daysí Capacity Building Workshop with office bearers of political parties on of gender discrimination

Aurat Foundation, in collaboration with AAWAZ Consortium partners (SAP-PK, SPO, Sungi) organized a 2-days capacity building workshop on ‘Gender Sensitization’, on 18-19 May, 2014, at Avari Hotel, Lahore.

Sixty two (62) political party office bearers including two MPAs from mainstream political parties attended the workshop. The participants were invited from twenty (20) districts of Punjab, namely Sargodha, Jhang, Okara, Rawalpindi, Mandi Bahauddin, R.Y. Khan, Rajanpur,D.G.Khan, Attock, Khushab, Faisalabad,

T.T.Singh, Nankana, Bahawalpur, Bhawalnagar, Mianwali, Pakpattan, Gujranwala, Khanewal, Bhakkar and Lahore.

The rationale for holding the consultative sessions was to create sensitization within political parties on women’s rights, promote women’s political engagement at the decision making process at district level, enable them to understand and map out women’s social exclusion and rights of excluded groups. 

Ms. Mumtaz Mughal, Provincial Manager, AAWAZ Programme, welcomed the distinguish participants and shared the objectives of two days’ workshop. She conducted a session on ‘Gender Disparities in Political Participation and Pro Women Legislation in Pakistan’ with special focus on recent pro-women legislation in Punjab. Mr. Salman Abid conducted a session on ‘Unpacking Women Political Participation and Democracy’.  Mr. Ali Imran, Country Program Manager, West Minister Foundation for Democracy, conducted session on ‘18th Amendment and Right to Information Law in Punjab’, while Mr. Samson Salamat, Executive Director, Centre for Human Rights Education, conducted a session on ‘ Understanding Social Exclusion and Rights of Minorities’.

Ms. Fouzia Vaqar Chairperson, Provincial Commission on the Status of Women, Punjab, Chief Guest of the event, spoke about the importance of women’s political participation and gender sensitization within political parties. She said that gender disparities in current political scenario are still increasing, and political activists could push their parties to overcome these gaps. For this, amendments are essential in Political Party Act, 2002. Parties should award the tickets to their women leaders on winnable general seats.

Ms. Nasreen Zahra, Resident Director, Auart Foundation, Lahore, said that to remove gender disparities in key decision making bodies including Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP), Law Commission, economic planning bodies etc. Political parties shall also develop a strategy   to mainstream women political activists.  She said that reactivation of local government is an opportunity for women participation in political process. She stressed that woman political leaders and activists need to play an active role in implementation of  the Punjab Fair Representation Act, 2014.

At closing session, Ms. Fozia Vaqar, and Ms. Nasreen Zahra distributed certificates among participants.