‘Ending patriarchy’ sought in Preamble

LALITPUR: Leaders of different political parties, rights activists and people from different professions and businesses on Monday issued a nine-point declaration, demanding that ‘ending patriarchy’ be inserted in the Preamble of the new constitution, the draft of which is being deliberated in the Constituent Assembly.

They have also demanded a provision on citizenship, ensuring that children get citizenship either in the name of their mother or father.

“The constitution should clearly state in a simple language that one can acquire citizenship from mother’s name,” the declaration reads. “There should be same provision for acquiring naturalised citizenship in the case of Nepali men and women married to foreigners.”

The nine-point declaration was made public today at an interaction organised by Media Advocacy Group in Lalitpur, where Constituent Assembly members, leaders from various political parties and right activities among others were present.

Speaking at the programme, Nepali Congress leader Arjun Narsingh KC and CPN-UML leader Rabindra Adhikari assured that ‘ending patriarchy’ will be inserted in the Preamble of the constitution. KC expressed his reservations about the demand on citizenship provision, but Unified CPN-Maoist leader Narayan Kaji Shrestha said he was positive about ensuring equal right to men and women in citizenship issue.

CPN-UML leader Ram Kumari Jhakri and social activist and Maiti Nepal Chair Anuradha Koirala strongly advocated for citizenship through mother, saying thousands of people could be rendered stateless if the constitution is devoid of the provision. The participants also demanded that women’s rights must be ensured in the constitution by ending all sorts of Gender Based Violence against women as mentioned in the Interim Constitution.

Babita Basnet, President, MAG, said, “We have demanded that 33 per cent women’s participation be ensured in all constitutional bodies and state organs and 50 per cent women’s participation in local bodies. The language should also be gender friendly and simple so that all Nepali citizens can understand.”

The leaders and activists also demanded that the government create a provision to count women’s household works in Gross Domestic Product, give full reproductive health rights to women.

‘Institutionalise women’s rights’

KATHMANDU: Women lawmaker have stressed that there should be equal representation of women in major state organs.

Most of the women Constituent Assembly members speaking on Monday's CA meeting said that there should be a provision to ensure the post of either President or Prime Minister or Speaker be given to a woman. They also said that a mandatory provision should be made for political parties to guarantee at least 33 per cent representation of women.

The women lawmakers also called for improving the weakness seen in the draft constitution. The new constitution should clearly establish the rights of women and it must be mandatory for the bodies concerned to implement the rights in practice, added the women lawmakers. They said there is no alternative to agitation if the new constitution fails to guarantee the rights of women. — RSS