COTABATO CITY (September 19, 2023) – Ensuring that women are represented not only as candidates but as key decision-makers and influencers in the Bangsamoro, the Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD) convenes leaders and members of the Social Welfare Committee (SWC) of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) for a series of active citizen training-workshop from August to October 2023.
In partnership with the BTA Office of MP Engr. Aida M. Silongan, more than a hundred SWC constituents undergo training and mentoring to become more active political movers reinforcing and supporting enhancement of BARMM’s structures through legislations and policies, especially the Parliament.
“As a leading women’s organization, SWC has a crucial role in shaping the Bangsamoro’s future by engaging in political undertakings such as parliamentary elections and governance. This activity is highly necessary so we are equipped to engage in parliamentary politics” said MP Silongan.
BTA Floor Leader Atty. Sha Elijah Dumama-Alba, one of the resource persons, highlights that the decline of women participation in the political arena is due to hate speech and online bashing said “their security — either physical or online — is being jeopardized when they run for office…This is one of the reasons why women are not inclined to participate politically.”
The three-cohort training-workshop aims to raise the political consciousness of SWC leaders and members on the important concepts and principles of the parliamentary system and political party building.
The first and second cohort were successfully held in Davao City on 3-5 August 2023 and 15-17 September 2023, respectively. The last cohort is set on 29 September to 01 October 2023.
WFD is supporting women political leaders in the Bangsamoro to work together to identify and influence policies and laws in the parliament to bolster political voice and pave a meaningful representation for all people.
“This is the political process. We need to really immerse ourselves in the politics of things. We can’t keep to ourselves. This is what is needed for us to go forward and succeed,” Floor Leader Dumama-Albas emphasized.
BARMM Chief Minister Ahod Balawag Ebrahim, Alhaj who also graced the activity, stressed that the Bangsamoro Government has continued support for the crucial interventions that will enable women achieve political empowerment and leadership in the region. (BangsamoroToday with report from WFD Bangsamoro)