ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister (PM) Shahid Khaqan Abbasi Thursday said that Pakistan has come a long way in women empowerment in all spheres, and hoped that their contributions would continue to make the country strong and prosperous in the days ahead.
Speaking here at an interactive session with women from different walks of life to mark the women’s day here at the PM Office, the prime minister said that the women were making remarkable progress in health, education, sciences, politics and defence of the country.
He said that the government was committed to facilitate the entry of women into every field and ensure that they get equal opportunities, facilities and emoluments.
PM Abbasi also said that the Pakistani women have not only been recognised at a national level, but also at international level, and the country has top notch front line combat pilots, educationists, health and IT experts. He added that Pakistan also boasts having the first Muslim woman head of government.
He further said that the women in Pakistan have come a long way and achieved a lot. He added that those days were gone when the country used to have a quota for women, adding that it was time that the men need to get a quota.
He said that in every educational institution, out of the top ten students, seven were women. He added that the women have done their bit, now it was time for the men to meet the challenge.
He said that the women were excelling in all areas, however, acknowledged that they still have a long way to go. He added that the employers he has met recognise that the women workers were more productive and hard working.
Abbasi, however, said that the women in business still have a wide spectrum to cover, and added that there were barriers that need to be done away with. He said that a number of women were part of the cabinet and were holding key posts.
He mentioned that there were 60 reserved seats for women in the parliament, and added that he would have preferred that they too come through direct election. In this regard, he said that there was a need to create more opportunities for the women to come to mainstream politics.
The prime minister said that the day was an opportunity to renew the commitment for individual and collective efforts in a way so as to protect social, economic, social and political rights of the women. He added that the government had taken several legal and administrative measures in the past few years to protect rights of women.
PM Abbasi further asked the gathering to pledge to protect individual and collective rights, financially, politically and socially, for the women and said that in this regard, everyone had to play an active role.
The prime minister later went around different tables and discussed with groups the issues related to the national economy, politics, health, education and their impact on the women.