Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Saturday said that his government is committed to ensuring empowerment of women as their participation in all walks of life is necessary for sustainable development.
“This is our national duty to protect the interests of women and provide them equal opportunities without any discrimination. I reaffirm my pledge for protection of women’s rights in the country to make them valuable citizens and productive members of the society,” said Nawaz, in his message on International Women’s Day.
He expressed the pleasure that Pakistani nation also joined the international community in celebrating International Women’s Day. He said being a state party to the Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), Pakistan was committed to implementing its provisions in true spirit. The government has already taken measures to ensure women’s rights as envisaged in the CEDAW, he added.
Nawaz said the government was continuously undertaking reforms so as to enable women to participate in all walks of life.
He said Pakistan had enacted effective legislation to address women’s issues with a view to safeguard their rights.
“I am glad to note that the Law and Human Rights Ministry is making efforts for protection and promotion of women’s rights in collaboration with all the relevant stakeholders,” he said.
Nawaz said he felt pride in stating that Pakistani women were participating in all sectors and many of them had excelled in their respective fields, not only in Pakistan, but also on the international level.
He urged all concerned to sincerely undertake legislative, administrative and social sector reforms to further create an enabling environment for women.
He also praised the UN agencies and non-governmental organisations for continuously advocating and highlighting the women’s rights and hoped that they would continue pursuing this important mission with the same zeal and vigour.
Separately, talking to media at his Raiwind palace, Nawaz said allocation of 50 percent share for women in the Prime Minister’s Youth Loan Scheme reflects the government’s trust and commitment to provide them maximum opportunities.
He said the PML-N government had taken marvellous steps for welfare and progress of women in society so that they could play their effective role in the prosperity of the country.
He said it was our strong belief that the country could not make progress without providing equal opportunities to women which were half part of society.
The PM said Pakistani women had proved their mettle in all walks of life and served the nation at par with men.
“From education to armed forces, the women are serving the nation and proving that they are equally strong and able to serve the country,” he added.
Nawaz said his government was working hard for the cause of women. He expressed confidence that the women would set up their businesses after availing loans from the PM Youth Scheme.
The scheme would appear as a catalyst of change in lives of people specially the women, he added.