UN Women and Women Parliamentary Caucus of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa sign a Memorandum of Understanding to Promote Rule of Law and Enhance Pro Women Legislative Reform Agenda

Date: Thursday, May 20, 2021

[Press release]

Dr Sumera Shams, Chairperson, Women's Parliamentary Caucus and Sharmeela Rassool, Country, Representative UN Women Pakistan signing a MoU in KP, Pakistan. Photo: UN Women/Sabina Shahid
Dr Sumera Shams, Chairperson, Women's Parliamentary Caucus and Sharmeela Rassool, Country, Representative UN Women Pakistan signing a MoU in KP, Pakistan. Photo: UN Women/Sabina Shahid

Peshawar, Pakistan — UN Women and Women Parliamentary Caucus (WPC) of the Provincial Assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) fostered their partnership by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to advance Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment (GEWE) agenda with a renewed focus on strengthening Rule of Law in the KP province. The joint efforts will support the government institutions in drafting effective policies and action plans, build capacity and enhance accountability mechanism to protect, enable and promote rights (social, economic, political, and access to justice) of marginalized groups, especially women, including those from the newly merged districts.

During the signing ceremony, Dr. Sumera Shams, Chairperson of WPC said, “While having the same mandate as that of women’s empowerment, the partnership between UN Women and WPC KP will further strengthen the pro-women legislation and implementation of those laws across the province as well as the deprived tribal belt."

Sharmeela Rassool acknowledged the efforts of the WPC in furthering the GEWE agenda in KP and shared that the joint efforts will be pivotal in realizing and safeguarding the rights of women and girls. “In the past, UN Women supported the WPC in finalizing KP’s Women Empowerment Policy and contributed in mainstreaming gender in two draft bills. Now, we are taking a step forward by advocating for effective implementation of laws and policies.”

Under this MoU, UN Women will support the WPC on the implementation of KP Domestic Violence Against Women Act 2021, Women Empowerment Policy 2017 and lead advocacy on Child Marriage Restraint Bill; enhance service delivery for survivors of gender-based violence through the rollout of capacity building of Dar ul Amans; undertake gender research, draft gender-sensitive laws, develop position papers, resolutions, declarations and reports.

Moreover, UN Women and WPC will work together for increased awareness-raising and capacity building of local government representatives, WPC members, parliamentarians, and political parties to better understand the challenges in strengthening rule of law and undertake concerted efforts to overcome those challenges.

"Together we can make a change. The development sector and Government are the two wheels that run the reformative system. The partnership with UN Women will aim to achieve a robust response in the area of gender equality and women empowerment", said Mahmood Jan, Deputy Speaker KP Provincial Assembly.

For media queries:

Anam Abbas (anam.abbas@unwomen.org)