Brunei Minister: Rights of Brunei Women Protected


Datin Paduka Hjh Adina Othman speaks about the rights of women in Brunei at the 59th session of the UN Committee on CEDAW in Geneva, Switzerland. Picture: Courtesy of MYCS

Rabiatul Kamit

GENEVA, Sunday, November 2, 2014 - BRUNEI will continue its commitment of promoting and protecting women’s rights in the country in line with the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), said the Deputy Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports on Wednesday.

Datin Paduka Hjh Adina Othman said their ongoing efforts to involve women in all aspects of national development have increased the level of achievements of women in the country.

“Positive growth and development contributed by women has been recognised and included in establishing the direction of national policies and strategies towards harnessing the full potential of women in nation-building,” she said at the 59th session of the United Nations Committee on CEDAW.

She added that steps towards promoting and protecting the rights of women have been long-established.

“Through the various legislations that have been introduced over the years either through common law or Syariah law and enhanced by a harmonious society, women in Brunei Darussalam have made the same progress as men,” said Datin Paduka Hjh Adina at the meeting in Geneva, Switzerland.

As a result of various mechanisms implemented at national level, she noted that women were not only successful in the areas of education, health and employment, but also in the decision-making process.

In the employment sector, for example, the participation of women has increased from 58.8 per cent in 2001 to 69.7 per cent in 2011. Meanwhile, in the field of education, 70 per cent of students in local universities are made up of females.

To improve the status of women in Brunei, the Deputy Minister said several action plans are being implemented by the National Council for Social Issues.

“All of these action plans will impact the status and condition of women in a positive way. The Action Plan for Women and Family Institutes was an instrumental strategy in developing the potential of women,” she said.

The action plans are monitored by deliverable milestones as well as the implementation of projects and programmes that have a key performance indicator.

“The careful planning towards the alignment of strategies and implementation of quality projects and programmes of the government under the National Development Plan, which is guided by the National Vision 2035, has helped the advancement of women,” said Datin Paduka Hjh Adina.

During the session, Brunei’s efforts to promote and protect the rights of women were reviewed by the UN Committee on CEDAW led by Nicole Ameline from France.

A total of 23 committee members from various countries posed a range of questions based on Brunei’s report to the UN Committee on CEDAW and the resources of the UN Institutions, National Human Rights Institutions and NGOs.

The latest review session was conducted following the UN Committee on CEDAW’s research on the “Combined Initial and Second Report” for Brunei last April 2013.

Led by Datin Paduka Hjh Adina, the Bruneian delegation comprised of the Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, Hj Noor Jusmin Hj Abd Samad, alongside other government officials.

Having signed the CEDAW in 2006, Brunei is responsible for ensuring the progress and development of women to enable to exercise and enjoy their human rights at par with men.

The Brunei Times

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