Sun, Oct

New minister seeks wider role for women in govt


delbar-nazari-afghan-women-affairs-ministerNew Women’s Affairs Minister Dilbar Nazari on Sunday said the government should appoint females as governors, district chiefs and secretaries so as the gender could play a wider role in the country’s political, economical and social development.

The Wolesi Jirga or lower house of parliament on Saturday approved President Ashraf Ghani’s picks for 16 ministries.

Dilbar Nazari, who received 131 votes from 239 lawmakers present at yesterday’s session, was among the ministers approved.

Earlier, women’s rights activists had demanded one-thirds of cabinet portfolios to be given to women.

The Ministry of Women’s Affairs has welcomed the approval of four women as ministers by parliament, but urged more representation for females in other public sector departments.

Syed Muzgan Mustafavi, the Women’s Affairs Ministry secretary, said woman ministers should not play a symbolic role, but a complete and independent role exercising powers bestowed on them.

Addressing a conference on women’s socio-economic rights, she said four women as ministers could not resolve challenges women faced in society.

She urged women to utilise their capacity on leadership level, asking the government to appoint females as governors, mayors, district chiefs and judges.

Muzgan said women had been contributing to the country’s economic development and separate markets should be established for them so that they could contribute in more effective way.

The ouster of despotic Taliban regime in 2001 enabled many women to work on various key government posts during the past 13 years.

They include Sairah Shikaib, the Faizabad district chief in northern Jawzjan province, Habiba Surabi, a former governor of central Bamyan province, Tayaba Khawari, a provincial council head.

Uzra Jafari had worked as the mayor of central Daikundi province and Marya Bashir as the attorney general in Herat.