Women are agents of change that men can never be. This was said by Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar at an event “Women as agents of change” held at the residence of the British High Commissioner on Monday evening.
Surrounded by aspiring women in the audience, Khar in a lighter vein said, “We will always be surrounded by men but it is very nice to be amongst successful women.” She said that today we see women in almost every field, be it in the fields of Muzaffargarh or at a bank in Karachi. She stated that it was important for the women of the privileged class to work for those who are less privileged and socially marginalised, especially those that are discriminated against.
The event was hosted by British High commissioner Adam Thomson who was accompanied by the Australian High Commissioner Timothy George. The reception was hosted ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting scheduled in Australian city Perth for October 28th.
This year, the Commonwealth has selected this theme as by investing in women countries can accelerate social, economical and political progress. The British envoy used the event to celebrate inspirational women in Pakistan recognising their achievements at every level, and from every part of the country.
A short documentary was shown to the audience to acknowledge the inspirational stories of women in Pakistan from National Assembly Speaker Fehmida Mirza, to Zahida Kazmi, Pakistan’s first woman taxi driver as well as other exceptional women from the field of politics, business, the civil society and arts.
“We have highlighted just a few examples of women who are role models for all segments of the Pakistani society. It is vital that Pakistan continues to encourage women in all strata of life, and we continue to support the Pakistan government in achieving this objective,” said Thomson.
He said that it was very important to know and acknowledge the importance of women in any society and their diverse roles in making a change.
“We see Pakistani women working in politics, media, and civil society. We appreciate their work in rural areas who are the actual agents of change.”
Thomson said that the Commonwealth is an important international forum bringing together over 2 billion people from 54 countries. He said the UK is committed to playing a leading role in developing Pakistan’s links with the Commonwealth.
The HC also recognised some of the best entries to the British High Commission’s online competition where we asked people from across Pakistan to send stories of Pakistani women who had inspired them or inspired change in their communities.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 18th, 2011.
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