In seeking to develop a holistic approach to improve the capacity and effectiveness of the WPCs, SUBAI- Pakistan conducted a series of Provincial Roadshows (Sindh, Punjab, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) with the overall goal of identifying challenges faced by the individual Provincial WPCs; share best practices, and provide a platform enhanced skills development.
Following the Roadshows, SUBAI-Pakistan, brought together all WPCs through an “Inter-Provincial Women Parliamentary Caucus Legacy Workshop” held in collaboration with the Strengthening Electoral and Legislative Processes (SELP) Project, UNDP and UN Women Pakistan.
The event was organized to discuss the achievements made by the existing WPC members and their future role for advancing gender equality and mainstreaming in Assembly business, and ensuring that a strong legacy is left behind for incoming, newly elected members.
The Legacy Workshop was planned at a crucial time considering the transitional phase of the present Assembly and upcoming elections later in 2018. While the March 2018 Workshop acted as a legacy building exercise and identified proposed strategic actions post elections there was also a recognition of the need to bring the WPCs together again to realize the vision for the future.
The two-day Workshop brought together WPC Members from all Provincial and Legislative Assemblies, as well as Federal level WPC members, senior women Parliamentarians, the senior leadership of the Secretariats, Provincial Assemblies Speakers and donors.
The objectives of the two-day Legacy Workshop were to:
- Reflect on WPCs achievements to date, challenges and strategies to strengthen WPCs
- Build a shared vision and identify broader objectives to ensure continuity and an effective transition to the newly elected members
- Agree on short term, strategic actions to ensure institutionalization of the WPC post elections
- Explore key gender issues and propose solutions to advance gender equality in parliamentary business and sustainable development.
An agreed path forward for an effective transition to the newly elected WPC members, with a defined vision and strategic direction were key outcomes of the Legacy Workshop.
- The Legacy Workshop explored and developed a much better appreciation and understanding of WPCs roles, importance, challenges and institutional mechanisms to promote gender equality in parliamentary and electoral politics and achieving SDGs.
- Province-specific key gender issues were identified, with solutions proposed to promote gender equality and achieving national/provincial commitments and SDGs.
- The Provincial WPCs developed and built consensus on a Vision Statement to work together irrespective of their political affiliation, influence National/ Provincial policies to achieve equality and to support one another for addressing common issues.
- The four Provincial and Legislative Assemblies of AJK and GB WPCs set their province specific strategic directions in four areas (Legislative & Oversight Function, Representative Function, Party Political Function and Institutional Strengthening). These strategic directions will further be informed by their mission, values and core mandate.
- During the Legacy Workshop, the GB Assembly formed a WPC with the objectives to promote gender equality and women empowerment in GB. The WPC will enhance the role of women parliamentarians in gender sensitive legislation.