The South Asia Partnership Pakistan (SAPPK) recently hosted a provincial interface dialogue with legislators to present the findings of the Women Voter Networks and Women in Local Government Karachi initiatives.
During the event, Nafeesa Shah, a former MNA from the Pakistan Peoples Party, emphasised the need for gender parity in the legislative bodies at both the provincial and national levels. She stressed that women should hold half of the seats in the parliament and highlighted their crucial role in lawmaking. Nafeesa expressed her satisfaction with the fact that one in every three women would have a political seat. She also committed to sharing the charter of demands.
PTI Senator Serena Adnan Khan supported the idea of 50% representation for women in politics, emphasizing that it is not a taboo subject within the PTI. She highlighted the opportunities provided by PTI to women, youth, and minorities in their party manifesto, including the Zainab Alert Bill and initiatives aimed at empowering women in various sectors. She mentioned the establishment of an E-Desk to address women’s complaints and PTI’s role in advancing the breast cancer movement in Pakistan.
Mangla Sharma of MQM Pakistan stated that three points from the Charter of Demand are already part of the MQM manifesto, and she proudly mentioned that 10 women are members of the MQM Coordination (Rabita) Committee.
Nuzhat Shireen, representing the Sindh Commission on the Status of Women, proposed that each political party allocate four tickets to transgender individuals. She also recommended that the state take action against parents who exclude their transgender children from inheritance.
Irfan Mufti, Deputy Director of SAPPK, highlighted the organization’s four-decade-long commitment to women’s empowerment. He noted that SAPPK had mobilized 4,500 women, worked to eliminate barriers hindering women’s participation in politics, and facilitated the establishment of young women voter networks and women in local government.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 25th2023.