What candidates said before the election


By Rahela Hashim Sidiqi, Women Right Activists, AWN and AWSF Member

Afghan Women’s Network (AWN) is the coordination body for women’s NGOs in Afghanistan. It was established after the Beijing conference in 1995AWN representatives plan is to see all presidential candidates in turn and met the first two on 2nd March, 2014.  Their aim was to find out what Dr Abdullah Abdullah and Qutbudin Hellal plan to put into their programs if they are elected as President of Afghanistan.

Dr Abdullah Abdullah said that AWN and civil society organisations in general had made visible achievements so should not be ignored or face setbacks. He expressed the intention to consider women’s participation in all development processes such as education, higher education, employment opportunities, healthcare for mothers and children, private sector involvement, small loan programs, handicraft advancement, political participation and positive discrimination.  He pledged that this commitment would be mentioned on 8th March and that AWN would be  invited to attend that presentation.

Qutbuddin Hellas, said he felt that women rights had not been considered and illustrated his own commitment to address this by saying “My own daughter is becoming a doctor. Women should be able to work outside as teachers, doctors etc and they should be able to inherit  and see the person they want to marry at the time of official ceremony of their marriage/Nikah time. If I successful I will implement my action plan.

AWN representatives submitted their proposal about how  the successful candidate should consider the role of women  in the development process of the country.

5th March 2014