KUALA LUMPUR, 23 June 2009: PKR Wanita has challenged Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil to enact a policy that ensures 30% women’s representation in government within six months, or resign.
PKR Wanita chief Zuraida Kamaruddin also pointed out that Shahrizat’s claim that the idea of a 30% quota for women’s representation was hers was factually inaccurate.
“This policy was brought up in the World Conference on Women in Beijing more than a decade ago. It was an agreement, contained in the Beijing Declaration, of which Malaysia was a signatory,” Zuraida said.
“(This claim) has sullied Shahrizat’s image as a minister,” Zuraida said at a press conference in Parliament today.
On 18 June, Shahrizat, who is the women, family and community development minister claimed that the 30% quota had been a policy that she began. “It was a policy created during my first term as minister,” Shahrizat said.
Shahrizat also revealed that Umno Wanita would be pushing for 30% of party leadership positions to be reserved for women, when Umno moves to amend its constitution.
This decision follows a similar amendment to PKR’s constitution. The 30% women’s representation in leadership positions was one of several amendments, passed at the Opposition party’s special congress on 13 June.
At today’s press conference, former PKR Wanita chief Fuziah Salleh suggested that the 30% quota be instituted as a key performance indicator (KPI) for the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry.