Monday, April 12, 2010

Task group holds final consultation on ARMM's gender code

MAGUINDANAO, Philippines - A task group helping draft the Gender and Development Code of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao held its final lap of consultative meetings in Davao City in the southern Philippines.

The series of meetings with Muslim religious leaders is a prelude to the legislation of the code. The Technical Working Group of the Regional Sub-committee on Gender and Development gathered comments and suggestions from invited participants of the April 7-8 consultations on the draft of the GAD Code.

The consultation intended to comprise and conform to the official position of the Muslim religious leaders on the religious and contentious provisions of the ARMM GAD Code.

The ARMM’s GAD Code is envisioned to be the regional translation of the Republic Act 9710 known as the Magna Carta of Women that was recently passed by Congress and signed into law by President Gloria Arroyo.

DILG-ARMM Assistant Secretary and GAD Code Technical Working Group chairperson Sharifa Pearlsia Dans said the adoption of the code could be “a regional landmark legislation that promotes and protects women’s rights in different areas and responds to gender issues and concerns affecting women and children in the region”.

Like the Magna Carta of Women, the GAD Code affirms the role of women in nation building and ensures the substantive equality of women and men, young and old.

It also promotes empowerment of women and pursues equal opportunities for women and men, boys and girls, ensures equal access to resources and to development results and outcomes in the region.

“Our advocacies are more on re-inventing initiatives, mechanism, public policy agenda suitable to our being a Muslim and to our region’s geographical configuration," said Tarhata Maglangit, the Commissioner of the ARMM Regional Commission on Bangsamoro Women for Maguindanao province.

Maglangit expressed optimism that the consultation with the Muslim religious leaders can widen the wisdom of opportunities for women’s participation in advancing gender and development agenda.

The final draft of the ARMM GAD Code will be submitted to the ARMM Regional Legislative Assembly for enactment into law.

The GAD Code will be sponsored by Maguindanao 1st District Assemblyman Abdulradzak Tomawis and Speaker Reggie Generale of the Lone district of Tawi-Tawi as co-sponsor.

Series of provincial consultations have been conducted by the RSCGAD-ARMM technical working group since last year last, gathering local government stakeholders and development partners to brainstorm on issues and concerns involved in the prospected legislation of the code.

The consultation was spearheaded by the RCBW and the RSCGAD in the autonomous region in partnership with the the Commission on Population-XII and the United Nations Population Fund.

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