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35+ years of activism & feminism in Fiji

Published

23 October 2018

Author

Fiji Women's Rights Movement

Themes

Fiji Women's Forum PR: Women at the Helm #votewomenfiji2018

 

Fiji Womens Forum Logo COLOR SINGLE 1

Women at the Helm #votewomenfiji2018

23/10/2018

The Fiji Women’s Forum welcomes the announcement of the women candidates that are contesting in this year’s general election. The Fiji Women’s Forum stands by its position on the enhancement of women’s participation in decision-making and democratization processes including temporary special measures (TSMs). This is especially important as we are part of a national process of rebuilding agency for political participation including at local government and national parliamentary system.

“This is an exciting time to see an increase in the number of women contesting for this general elections. In 2014 the involvement of 18% of women compared to 2018 with 24% of women contesting. There is an increase of 6% with the hope of seeing more women get voted into parliament in ensuring greater accountability to gender equality commitments,” said the Co-convenors of The Forum.

The Fiji Women's Forum is made up of four women's organization in Fiji - the National Council of Women Fiji, Soqosoqo Vakamarama iTaukei, Fiji Women's Rights Movement and femLINKpacific who have forged a collaboration since 2012 to address the issue of underrepresentation of women in all spheres. This is directly linked to many of the challenges that women face, including the struggles with conflict and democratisation.

Article 4 of CEDAW that Fiji ratified in 1995 recognizes TSM may be needed to be implemented in the short term to advance women’s equally. The Pacific Platform for Action for the Advancement of Women & Gender Equality endorsed in 1994 had a target achievement of 30% of women in decision making levels of government. This was revised ten years later, the Revised Pacific Platform for Action 2005 – 2015 which included a recommendation that Government create an environment conducive for women to stand for election and take affirmative action in policies and practices that enhance gender parity in political representation.

In August 2017, The Fiji Women’s Forum in collaboration with Fiji Young Women’s Forum organised its inaugural National Convention a gathering of 100 women from across Fiji. The National Convention was a vital platform to continuously create awareness on women’s political participation in local and national democratization processes. Its outcome statement endorsed by the women at the convention, that the women will continually be committed to influence local to national political and governance structures despite barriers to political participation.

For the 2018 elections, we know that Fiji has many strong, articulate and politically active women who need to be voted in to our Parliament. Women’s role in civic and political life is as important as everything else she does. It’s high time that women claim their rightful place in our Parliament and country’s leadership.

-Ends-

Adi Finau Tabakaucoro (SSV) – 995 2893

Nalini Singh (FWRM)- 998 2221

Fay Volatabu (NCWF)- 916 3693

Geeta Goundar (femLINKpacific) – 215 1241