Emphasis on women’s rights

WOMEN’S movements are not fully recognised whereby the advocacy and awareness raising on women’s rights are deemed as a problem.

This was highlighted by the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa while addressing women representatives during a ministerial forum.

Ms Vuniwaqa said the forum would give the opportunity to discuss the implementation of the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).

“I wish to emphasise that your role in advancing the women’s agenda is not an option but a necessity, and the Fijian Government truly appreciates your vision and determination to improve the lives of Fijian women,” Ms Vuniwaqa said.

“The ministry is pleased to share the outcomes or the concluding observations of the CEDAW committee after reviewing the fifth state CEDAW report.”

“Government cannot do this in isolation and as custodians of the convention, we value your suggestions and propositions in improving the whole CEDAW work process in Fiji.”

“This is so that every organisation represented in this room will work to ensure that all Fijian women are made aware of all the opportunities that are available for their development and empowerment.”

She added a continuation of reviewing and addressing of gaps in advancing the holding of women’s rights, gender equality and women’s empowerment in Fiji will be done.

“The ministry has already embarked on reconvening the remaining task forces of the women’s plan of action consisting of formal sector employment and livelihood, access to services, equal participation, decision making and women in the law,” she added.

Ms Vuniwaqa said the ministry plans to have similar forums on an annual basis to maximise the opportunity to advancing the status of Fijian women.

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