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  • (+92) 51-2278134, (+92) 51-2278135

Strengthening of evidence-based policy-making urged

  • Tuesday, 20th May 2014
  • The News
  • Islamabad

There is dearth of research evidence on various issues of national concern and policy think-tanks should rigorously provide research support to strengthen role of parliamentarians in evidence-based policy-making, said Dr Abid Qaiyum Suleri, Executive Director, Sustainable Development Policy Institute.

Dr Suleri was speaking at the third meeting of SDPI’s Women Parliamentarians Council. More than two dozen women MPs attended including members of provincial legislatures.

Disclosing that SDPI research secretariat for women parliamentarians would be operational very soon, Dr Suleri said that his organisation plans to extend legislative drafting support to female MPs.

Dr Suleri said that a populace of almost 180 million, regardless of limited resources at hand is expanding at an alarming rate of 1.8%. He said that the nation is today locked in an intricate trap of crises starting from energy to unemployment, gender disparities, economic growth and security issues. He opined that policy prescriptions to these solutions often lack evidences and a mismatch of such policies with ground realities leads to weak implementation. While talking about post-18th Amendment, he said that some functions were assigned to provincial ministries, yet the challenge of transition of policy processes from Federal Government to the provinces is huge for the political governments in the center and provinces.

The MPs also discussed the plight of female inmates in prisons and suggested measures for their economic rehabilitation once they complete their sentence.

They enumerated problems faced by women MPs in the Parliament building including marginalisation in decision-making, lack of research support, gender discrimination and inequality in political process. They were of the view that women’s political empowerment and meaningful inclusion in decision-making was fundamental for any constructive and sustainable democratic change in Pakistan. However, few of them showed satisfaction on “effectiveness of their role as parliamentarians” and denied any instances of political marginalisation.

Demanding making CNIC mandatory for marriage registration, the women MPs emphasised that registration of divorce should also be made compulsory.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Vaqar Ahmed, Deputy Executive Director, SDPI, said that in the Gender Inequality Index, Pakistan Ranks 115 out of 140 countries and in Gender Empowerment Measure of UNDP, Pakistan is placed at 82 out of 93 countries.

Mome Saleem, senior researcher, SDPI, discussed the findings of SDPI-AAWAZ research on 'State of policies and legislations to curb Violence Against Women (VAW).' She said that SDPI believed that Women policy-makers were not only the voice of general public but a guarantee for gender responsive policy-making.

Source: http://www.thenews.com.pk/Todays-News-6-251087-Strengthening-of-evidence-based-policy-making-urged