Fiji Time: 3:55 AM on Sunday 25 March

Fiji Times Logo

/ Front page / Features

We all can do more

Ana Madigibuli
Monday, March 12, 2018

IT'S the time to rally for more recognition of the role of women in society and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played extraordinary roles benefitting their communities and Fiji.

This was a strong statement made by the President, Jioji Konrote, during the International Women's Day (IWD) celebration at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva last week.

On March 8, millions of people around the world celebrated International Women's Day.

It is a day to celebrate the cultural, economic, social and political achievement of women and commemorate the movement of women's right across the globe.

To mark International Women's Day in Fiji, women and many Fijians around the country participated in events that marked the special occasion from attending the Reclaim the Night march, participating in breakfast events, office celebrations, the launch of the new Service Delivery Protocol and Women's Expo which will be held in June and the launch of the Women and Girls Education Grant by Westpac Fiji.

It shows the strong commitment Fiji has in strengthening gender equality where women are recognised and acknowledged for their tremendous contribution to development.

"The UN theme for International Women's Day 2018 is 'Time is Now: Rural and Urban Activists Transforming Women's Lives'. The theme provides an opportunity to encourage greater action to empower women in all settings, and to recognise the activists who are working relentlessly to claim women's rights and realise their full potential," Mr Konrote said.

"The campaign that we have adopted locally for International Women's Day is 'Press for Progress'. This is aimed at acknowledging both the progress we have made as a nation thus far and the opportunity to do even more for our women and girls.

"Fijian women and girls make up 50 per cent of our population. They obviously contribute significantly to our progress at the home front, within the communities and at both the national and international levels. They certainly deserve our nation's collective support.

"International Women's Day is also an opportunity to consider how to accelerate the 2030 United Nation's Agenda, building impetus for the effective implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, especially goals 4 and 5, which are to 'Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning' and to 'Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls'.

"More recently, the Global Gender Index Report ranked Fiji as 125 out of the 144 countries in the 2017 World Economic Forum. This ranking considers women's participation in four key areas including economic participation and opportunity, educational attainment, health and survival and political empowerment."

He said from a score of 0 to1, Fiji scored 0.979 for health and survival, 0.991 for educational attainment, 0.479 for economic participation and opportunity and 0.104 for political empowerment.

"These ratings indicate that we can do more especially in the areas of women's economic empowerment and women's participation in decision making," he said.

Westpac Fiji general manager Brett Hooker, in launching its Women and Girls Education Grant and the International Women's Day celebration in Suva, said it was quite comforting to see now more than ever, the public sector, private sector, non-government organisations and media working together to play an important role in providing women with the opportunities they did not have.

Mr Hooker said Westpac, as an organisation, had always supported gender equality.

"At Westpac Fiji, 56 per cent of our employees are female and as an employer Westpac empowers women to make confident career choices by providing education, information and networking opportunities," he said.

He said women empowerment through education was one of Westpac's key sustainability strategies.

Minister for Women Mereseini Vuniwaqa said in Parliament the ministry would continue to review and address the gaps in advancing gender equality and women's empowerment in Fiji.

"This will only be possible through cohesive efforts within the public and private sectors.

"Also important is the promotion of gender mainstreaming strategies at all levels of government through the effective implementation of the National Gender Policy," she said.

Fiji Times Front Page Thumbnail

Kaila Front Page ThumbnailFiji Times & Kaila Frontpage PDF Downloads

Use the free Acrobat Reader to view.

Code Inward TTs Outward TTs
CAD 0.64290.6239
JPY 52.917249.9172
GBP 0.35110.3431
EUR 0.40370.3917
NZD 0.69480.6618
AUD 0.64820.6232
USD 0.49830.4813



Exchange Rate updated on 23th, March, 2018

Today's Most Read Stories

  1. Son mourns mum's death
  2. Former players back
  3. Teacher investigated for alleged defilement
  4. Roko supports mate
  5. Hospital not ready, claims man
  6. Fiji loses, Krishna to miss second match
  7. Call for mass shots
  8. Disease is deadlier than dengue — Akbar
  9. Issues affecting Fiji: Poll
  10. Disputes: 51 per cent feel State should get involved

Top Stories this Week

  1. Meningococcal disease outbreak Tuesday (20 Mar)
  2. Doctors speak out Sunday (18 Mar)
  3. No desk for this girl Monday (19 Mar)
  4. Where are our horses Sunday (18 Mar)
  5. 12 dead by disease Tuesday (20 Mar)
  6. Police appeal to livestock owners Monday (19 Mar)
  7. Teacher reports male student in washroom for girls Tuesday (20 Mar)
  8. Son mourns mum's death Saturday (24 Mar)
  9. SGS junior has fastest 100m time Wednesday (21 Mar)
  10. Set academic goals achieved Friday (23 Mar)