World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Statement of Nauru Parliamentarian on VAW

Nauru - Statement of Nauru Parliamentarian on VAW

Statement of Hon. Aloysius Amwano, M.P., Parliament of Nauru, during the Pacific Parliamentary Assembly on Population and Development and Forum Presiding Officers and Clerks (PPAPD-FPOC)

Rarotonga, Cook Islands, November 17, 2009

Mr. Chairman,

I am very honoured to contribute on the topic of gender equality, a topic I feel has been left on the orders of the day for too long without action.

Please allow me to reflect a little on gender balance and its progress in Nauru.

We have far more women than men in Nauru and because we are good Christians we can only attract or be attracted to only one whom we shall call wife. For those of you who know me personally, yes I was once a naughty Christian, but I have reformed and I am now wiser from those interactions.

In 2002 the Government of Nauru decided to expand the department of Women's Affairs by creating a Ministry of Women's Affairs. I was very privileged to have been given the portfolio making me the first Minister for Women's Affairs on Nauru.

Fortunately, through my substantive portfolio as Finance Minister, we managed to gain the confidence of Parliament in providing significant funds to the national budget to enable our women to participate at regional and international conventions on women's affairs. The parliamentary support continues in Nauru today.

In that same year some women were appointed to some of the most senior positions in the public service; Chief Secretary, Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Secretary for Education and Consul General to Australia. To this day, these positions are still occupied by women with the exception of Foreign Affairs. In addition, our Ambassador to the United Nations is a woman and currently Nauru boasts its first and only PhD holder, also a woman.

Nauru recognizes that violence against women is a human rights issue, a health issue, a policing issue but most importantly a family issue.

Nauru has already addressed gender during our recent constitutional review to ensure that our constitution allows equal rights to men and women and that no discrimination is allowed through old practices, traditions and languages of our first constitution.

The governments of Kiribati and Solomon Islands and Samoa are to be commended for doing the difficult research (on Gender Based Violence) which has concreted their governments' actions to solve the problems.

We in the Pacific pride ourselves in valuing the concept of family.

We Parliamentarians, therefore, must now act together as beacons of democracy to restore the dignity and safety to our families by adopting a ZERO TOLERANCE attitude towards violence against women and children. We must legislate for gender equality and protection.

I was not voted or elected champion for gender equality, I volunteered.

I volunteered because I know I will be meeting many great men of integrity and influence at this meeting. Great men such as Hon. Tom Masters (Cook Islands), Hon, Fredriko Primo ( FSM), Hon. Taomati Iuta (Kiribati), Hon. Teatao Teannaki (Kiribati), Hon. Teatu Moutu Kaibuariki (Kiribati), Hon. Roati Le Mamea (Samoa), Hon. Sir Tomu Sione (Tuvalu), Hon. Valdon Dowiyogo (Nauru), and many more who I am confident will join me to help eradicate all forms of violence against women and children.

At the First Conference of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community held in Tahiti, the first woman Director General of SPC was appointed. I was so fortunate to have her beside me advising me as I chaired the Second Conference of the Secretariat of the Pacific Community in Noumea. Today I look around this conference room and it is so encouraging to see many more women participating in our regional development and decision-making.

It is sad to note that although much progress on this issue has taken place in Nauru, we still have to provide a safe house and services for the protection of women from violence and abuse.

Many of us in the Parliament are working toward eradicating violence and abuse against women. We currently have no women in our Parliament and we are persevering in empowering our women with confidence so they can become members of Parliament. Someday very soon we are confident to achieve this desired outcome. This outcome can only be achieved with some push, a push similar to the final painful push that women provide so we could be born into this world.

Only yesterday as we discussed and searched for solutions towards the effects of climate change, we agreed on unity under a common voice. This unity cannot be achieved unless we have gender equality.

Gentlemen, we have always referred to her as our better half, yet we use tradition as an excuse for her to walk behind us rather than with us.

Today I call upon you all great men and women to join in and eradicate all forms of violence and discrimination against women. Most important of all, together let us legislate, protect and promote gender equality.

Thank you.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

MSF: Ebola Crisis Update - 16th October 2014

16 October 2014 Cases Deaths Guinea 1,472 843 Liberia 4,249 2,458 Nigeria 20 8 Sierra Leone 3,252 1,183 Senegal 1 0 Total 8,994 4,492 WHO Figures - Data are based on official information reported by Ministries of Health. These numbers are subject to change ... More>>

ALSO:

Detroit: City-Backed Water Shut-Offs Contrary To Human Rights

20 October 2014 – The city of Detroit must restore access to water for its citizens who remain unable to pay their bills, two United Nations experts urged today, adding that a failure to do so would be a violation of the most basic human rights of those ... More>>

ALSO:

DR Congo: Head Of UN Mission Condemns Deadly Rebel Attacks

A MONUSCO APC is greeted by FARDC soldiers on their way back from the front line in the Beni region of the DRC where the UN is backing the FARDC in an operation against ADF militia. Photo: MONUSCO/Sylvain Liechti More>>

UNESCO Chief Denounces Killing Of Cambodian Journalist

17 October 2014 – The head of the United Nations agency tasked with defending press freedom today denounced the killing of a Cambodian reporter shot while investigating illegal logging in the eastern part of the country. More>>


UN Lauds Role Of Family Farmers In Ending Global Hunger

A farmer at work in a dragon fruit field in Viet Nam (July 2013). Photo: FAO/Hoang Dinh Nam | See more photos More>>


Funding Gap Looms Amid Efforts To Tackle Ebola & ISIS

Funding Gap Looms Amid Efforts to Tackle ‘Twin Plagues’ Ebola, ISIL, Warns UN Rights Chief More>>

ALSO:

  • The White House - Ebola: What You Need to Know

  • Egypt Sentences Another Al Jazeera Journalist

    In another disturbing move against freedom of speech and independent journalism in Egypt, one of Al Jazeera Arabic channel’s presenters, Ahmed Mansour, has been sentenced in absentia to fifteen years imprisonment by Cairo’s criminal court on the absurd ... More>>

    ISIL Advance On Iraqi Town Unleash New Flood Of Displacement

    Syrian Kurds from the town of Kobane seeking shelter in Iraq's Kurdistan region. Photo: UNHCR/D. Nahr More>>

    ALSO:

  • U.S. Department of State - U.S. Condemns ISIL Attacks in Iraq

  • Get More From Scoop

     
     
     
     
     
    World
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news