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Speaker: Members Of Parliament Are ‘Guardians’ Of Human Rights

Speaker: Members Of Parliament  Are ‘Guardians’ Of Human Rights
Fromn left Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum,Speaker Jiko Luveni with President Major-General (Ret'd) Jioji Konrote on November 18,2018.Photo:Simione Haravanua.
June 01
10:00 2018

Members of Parliament are guardians of human rights by virtue of their essential and oversight responsibilities to ensure respect for human rights.

These were the words of the Speaker of Parliament Dr Jiko Luveni while opening a special training organised for MPs at the Warwick Resort on Wednesday.

“Parliaments must assume these responsibilities by protecting the rights of its Members by providing information, knowledge and training to enable them to take an active part in human rights promotion and protection,” Dr Luveni said.

She said that elimination of sexism and discrimination in politics was everyone’s responsibility.

“While the increase in the number of women into parliaments is beneficial for representative democracies, it has tended to disrupt the established order, provoking some resistance.

“Comparatively, we are fortunate in Fiji that this experience is minimal but it should not nurture complacency in the protection of women parliamentarians.

“Men are an essential component of the solutions to be implemented; they need to be actively involved in the debate and commit themselves fully to the elimination of sexism and discrimination in politics.

They need to take a stand and assume their responsibilities alongside women.”

Members of Parliament attending the workshop also agreed that they should take the lead role and are looking forward to learning from the contents of the two days training.

Assistant Minister for Health Alex O’Connor: “I’m much interested in the workshop, as Madam Speaker mentioned that MPs should spearhead the elimination of violence against women and girls and standing up and saying no to violence.

“I’ll be very much interested in reading through the legality of FWCC and Ministry of Women’s advocacy in the elimination of violence against women and children,” he added.

Opposition Member of Parliament Mikaele Leawere said: “There is also a need to share this knowledge with the younger generation.

“It’s a very important role for MPs to promote these issues. The same should go down to the younger generation.”

Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre and training facilitator, Shamima Ali said that this was a great opportunity for MPs to have a very clear understanding, and raising the level of debate in Parliament around these issues.

The training with the topic: Gender Relations, Violence against Women and Human Rights Training for Members of Parliament is made possible with the support of Parliament, Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, UN Women, UNDP and Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre.



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