Women still lag in political empowerment with acute shortage of female MPs
BUTTERWORTH : Electing more women leaders can help the country produce laws that are friendlier to women and protect the family institution better, said Permatang Pauh MP Nurul Izzah Anwar.
She said that if women participation improves in politics and at policy-making levels, it can help the country progress towards the better protection of women and their families.
According to the figures made available by the Statistics Department for the Malaysia Gender Gap Index, gender parity has almost been achieved in areas of education and healthcare.
But women lag in economic activities and the most glaring deficit is in political empowerment, where there is an acute shortage of women in Parliament and state assemblies.
Women participation in Parliament is at 14.9% despite comprising 50% of the country’s population base.
Nurul Izzah said there is room for improvement in women participation in politics.
Speaking after the launch of a women leadership development workshop organised by the Penang Women Development Council here, she urged the authorities to not forsake other targeted groups that may be marginalised, such as single mothers, teenagers, parents, senior citizens, and the disabled.
Later, when attending the Bukit Bendera PKR anniversary celebration, Nurul told the delegates that the party needs to think outside of the box in the coming general election.
For the first time, she said, the party will be squaring off with some of its former leaders who have abandoned or betrayed the cause.
There is a need to be creative and innovative when dealing with the new political landscape, she added.
Bukit Bendera PKR chief Jason Ong Khan Lee said the party must continue its reform struggles despite losing some comrades over the years due to infighting, retirement, or betrayal.
“The fight for reform and to better the country must continue at all costs.”