AAWAZ PROVINCIAL DIALOGUE MEETING ON ‘EFFECTIVE REPRESENTATION AND PARTICIPATION OF WOMEN AND MINORITIES IN LG ELECTIONS IN PUNJAB’
It was debated and discussed that according to the Article 140-A of the Constitution makes it mandatory for all the provincial governments in the country to establish local government systems and devolve administrative, financial responsibility and authority to the elected representatives of the local bodies, with increased representation of women and excluded groups in local governments by amending Article 32 of the Constitution. It is the responsibility of provincial governments to provide safe environment for women and minorities so that they may play effective and constructive role in development process. These ideas were expressed by different representatives of political parties. AmnaUlfat PML(Q) UzmaBukhari PML(N), Dr. Semi Bukhari Pakistan Vice (PTI), Humaira Tariq and Aafiaserwer from Jamaat e Islami, Mehnaz Rafi human rights activist/Ex-MNA, Sunila Ruth MPA, PTI(minority seat) , Salman Abid Regional head (SPO), Mumtaz Mughal provincial manager Aurat foundation, ZakirShaheen provincial manger SAP PK addressed as guest speakers at the provincial meeting. A brief reflection session was held taking comments and questions from audiences.
SPO led National conference on constitutional protection of Local Governments under AAWAZ program with consortium partners at Islamabad Hotel on 17th March.The event was widely attended by AAWAZ program citizens of 45 districts of KP and Punjab province, a large number of women and minorities, civil society activities, academics, legislators and political parties.Prominent amongst the political party representatives were HasilBejanjo (NP), BushraGohar (ANP), Nusrat Sahar Abbassi (PML-F), Maliha Ali (PTI) and Choudry Javed Iqbal (PML-N), Yasmeen Lehri (NP) and Senator Mir Kabir Ahmed (NP). Each political party representative explained their party positions on Local Government elections and political perspective of all the provinces was presented. The role of political parties to hold LG elections was emphasized and representatives of the political parties affirmedto support constitutional protection of LGs.
The exampleof successful holding of Local Government elections in Balochistan despite extreme difficulties was presented by NP representative, lauded and referred to as the test case of strongpolitical will by speakers and participants. Senator HasilBejenjo, National Party, underscored key factors of success case of Balochistan LG election. He also pledged that NP being ally of Federal Government would take frontal role in tabling LG constitutional Protection bill as recommended by the National Conference.
To strengthen and support community organizations and public interest institutions of Pakistan for the benefit of poor and disadvantaged sections of society for sustainable development through a participatory approach.
A democratic, socially just and tolerant society guided by participatory principles, which realizes the full potential of its people and their aspirations for sustainable and self reliant development.