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Women councillors’ caucus launched

Women in Struggle for Empowerment (WISE) launched Local Government Women Councilors’ Caucus at a ceremony at Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Thursday.

The event was arranged in collaboration with US Agency for International Development under its Small Grants and Ambassador’s Fund Program (SGAFP). Caucus members, representatives of NGOs and LG experts attended the event.

Begum Zakia Shah Nawaz, Minister for Population Welfare Punjab, was chief guest, while LG expert Zahid Islam, Mumtaz Mughal, Resident Director Aurat Foundation, Bushra Khaliq ED, WISE and Kanwal Liaqat were among main speakers.

Begum Zakia Shah Nawaz termed formation of Caucus a big step towards addressing the issues of injustice to women and gender imbalances at grass root level. She said training was important for political workers and the caucus would be instrumental in realizing the sustainable development goals (SDGs) in their respective districts.

Bushra Khaliq, Executive Director- WISE said ‘‘we are excited that our hard work has paid off and the Caucus is finally launched. The WISE team has worked tirelessly to ensure that this truly historic event is in motion, trailblazing the way for women in politics.

Member Executive Committee of the Caucus Kanwal Liaqat said: “Caucus provides new vigor to push forward women empowerment agenda, in terms of policy and legislation at district level and further down.’’

LG Expert Zahid Islam said, since the caucus members were now trained and well aware of the functioning of the system, it was now their duty to apply skills and have oversight of the budget-making process, identification of development schemes and decision making at local level.

Reporter. Women councillors’ caucus launched. The Nation, April 21, 2017

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