Women in nation-building – Speaker

Bringing women to the forefront for nation-building requires everyone’s support.

This was the message relayed by the Speaker Hon. Dr Jiko Luveni while officiating at the 4th National Women’s Expo at Suva’s National Gymnasium this morning.

Hon. Dr Luveni said promoting gender-equality and women empowerment in nation-building continued to be an important goal for sustainable development in which all the countries in the world were committed to.

“Today, as we come together for the opening of this annual event to celebrate the work of women artisans from all over Fiji, we are reminded of your commitment and dedication, and struggles to reduce poverty and build a more peaceful and prosperous Fiji,” she told the women.

“This can only happen when we empower women to be resourceful. Half of Fiji’s population are females and the country can’t afford to leave us struggling behind our men.

“To achieve sustainable development, women must be given equal opportunities with men because when we earn an income that money goes into the needs of our families.”

Hon. Dr Luveni, at the same time, thanked the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation for their commitment towards the event.

“I am extremely proud that the Ministry has remained committed to promoting the objectives of the event with increased focus on high quality and demand-oriented products over the years,” she added.

Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Hon. Mereseini Vuniwaqa said the expo was a programme that stems from the Fijian Government’s commitment to empowering women to becoming entrepreneurs and also to enhance their economic participations.

“The Fijian Government promotes women’s economic empowerment, especially that of our rural women in recognition to the fact that women are central to national development,” she said.

Meanwhile, a total of 340 women from across the country are part of the event.