Workshop held to prepare report on women’s issues

Kathmandu, August 28

Representatives of various ministries, civil society and stakeholders today participated in a workshop to prepare a report to be presented during the 71st session of Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women scheduled for October 23 in Geneva.

CEDAW is an international convention adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1979, which is commonly understood as an international bill of rights for women. Consisting of a preamble and 30 articles, it defines what constitutes discrimination against women and sets up an agenda for national action to end such discrimination.

Nepal is one of the 189 countries that have ratified the CEDAW. By accepting the Convention, states commit themselves to undertake a series of measures to end discrimination against women in all forms Its ratification requires implementation of the UNSC Resolution 1325 and Women Peace and Security Resolutions.

The UNSCR 1325 deals with the issues of women, peace and security, especially in conflict-hit countries.

Member country of CEDAW has to submit the report on status of women in the country every four years. Report on issues like gender equality, women’s rights, women’s participation in decision making levels, women’s access to quality health services, access to education and capacity building progress is submitted.

The CEDAW committee in its session studies the report submitted by the governments and its shadow report made by civil society, NGOs and INGOs.  The committee which is considered a ‘strong accountability mechanism’ will also hold discussions with the national representatives and provide comments on the report.

Bandana Rana, Nepal’s first elected committee member of CEDAW said, “The CEDAW’s concluding observation about women’s status in our country a  few years ago has been highly helpful in formulating new rules and amending some existing laws. Issues of gender violence, gender equality envisioned in the constitution, legalisation of abortion and women’s participation are the major achievements that were made possible due to awareness raising at international platforms like CEDAW.”

Mavic Cabrera-Balleza, CEO of Global Network of Women Peace Builders, one of the organisers of the workshop, said, “The CEDAW convention have yielded positive results and helped prepare national action plan in the previous years. This time, we hope the convention will be helpful in disseminating our achievements so far, making the local leaders and people in far-flung areas know about women’s issues.”