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Cambodia – Women’s Day feted amid Covid

Orm Bunthoeurn THE PHNOM PENH POST Sat, March 07, 2021

Civil society groups celebrate International Women’s Day in Phnom Penh in 2017. Post staff

During International Women’s Day this year, Queen Mother Norodom Monineath Sihanouk noted that the participation of women in public affairs, politics and the private sector has improved, while Prime Minister Hun Sen called for the strengthening of national solidarity and unity, and the maintenance of peace and political stability.

The Queen Mother also expressed admiration and support for the Ministry of Women’s Affairs for mentioning the topic “Women and development on [in the] Covid-19 context” to be marked as International Women’s Day on March 8.

A message celebrating the 110th International Women’s Day on March 8 and obtained by The Post on March 7 said that the Queen Mother noted that women and girls have fully exercised the rights and opportunities to develop their knowledge, skills, techniques and resources which are the foundation of global human rights, equality in partnerships and in family living, and potential participation in the context of development of society.

The message said: “I would like to admire and support the Ministry of Women’s Affairs and the Cambodia National Council for Women for working hard to promote gender equality for women to receive protection, rights and benefits. The social attitudes were changed so that women will be recognised and regarded as an important partner in developing families and society by helping push for the building and development of women and providing women the opportunities to take part in work and all sector equally.”

A letter from the prime minister Hun Sen on March 8 read that the topic “Women and development on [in the] Covid-19 context” has shown the active participation of women in the development work at all levels, sectors and all under circumstances in line with the Rectangular Strategy Phase IV that women are the backbone of the national economy and society.

Hun Sen requested that all relevant ministries and institutions, development partners, civil society organisations and private sectors as well as all citizens focus attention on some main priorities like strengthening national solidarity and unity, maintaining peace, political stability, the stability of economy and finance, continuing to push for the movement to combat Covid-19, to guarantee the wellbeing and the livelihood of the people, and socio-economic development.

“The expansion of the scope covering social protection systems includes the wellbeing of women and girls along with implementing all social assistance programmes. The economic bravery of women is to be continued by increasing knowledge and developing businesses for women, developing micro-, small- and medium-sized businesses. The programmes of vocational training and financial inclusiveness are to be strengthened,” the letter read.

Meas Sa Im, deputy head of women’s and children’s affairs at Adhoc, said that civil society organisations had a joint topic celebrating the 110th International Women’s Day on March 8. The joint topic is “Genuine democracy leads to social protection systems and justice for women and all”.

She explained that if there is genuine democracy, it might lead to social protection systems that are not only for women – it means that justice is for all and the common good for all.

“Women do a lot of work. I can say that they do more than men if they work both outside and inside [the home]. They even have to take care of their children, so they are the first teachers. Because of all these problems, women could not raise their rights of freedom, expression, concern and challenging problems, so their freedoms and the growth of society don’t follow as well,” she said.


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