Nominate more women in elections | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 18, 2008 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, April 18, 2008

Nominate more women in elections

Speakers urge political parties

Speakers at a dialogue yesterday called on the political parties to nominate more women in the upcoming election to increase women's participation in parliament.
Although women make up 50 percent of the total population, their participation in the policymaking is very poor, they said, adding that it is not possible to bring about qualitative changes in politics and strengthen democracy unless women are well represented in parliament.
Bangladesh National Woman Lawyers' Association (BNWLA) organised the dialogue entitled 'Women leadership and the upcoming national parliament election' at Jatiya Mahila Sangastha auditorium in the city.
Speaking as the chief guest, Dr Nazma Chowdhury said women leadership is almost absent in all the sectors.
"Vote is the main weapon of women and we have to use our votes to establish our rights. We have to encourage women to vote those political parties who nominate more women in the elections and also care about the development of women," she said.
She also suggested floating a non-political forum comprising women's organisations who work for the development of women.
Educationist Dr Dilara Chowdhury said, "We have to empower women to offset the negative impacts of globalisation as women are worst affected by them."
Women have played important roles in various fields, but they could not play any role in politics since they did not get any opportunities to do so, she said.
She suggested forming a forum of women, which will help women contest the elections as independent candidates.
Women's rights activist Maleka Begum said the political parties do not have any women-friendly policies. However, they formulate such policies before the elections for political gains.
"We have to launch a campaign to dissuade women from voting those political parties which will not nominate women in the elections and will not take steps to establish women's right," she said.
She also said all progressive organisations and people should raise their voice against those who are opposing the National Women Development Policy.
Awami League leaders Col (retd) Faruque Khan and Dr Dipu Moni, Jatiya Party leader GM Quader, Executive Director of DemocracyWatch Taleya Rehman, BNWLA President Fawzia Karim and Executive Director Advocate Salma Ali also spoke.

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