COTABATO CITY — In her 4th State of the Bangsamoro Women Address (SOBWA), Chairperson Bainon Karon of the Bangsamoro Women Commission (BWC) proudly shared that the Commission has been steadfast in mainstreaming gender and development in the region.
“On raising awareness and building capacities of planners, policy, and decision-makers on gender and development, I am happy to share that since 2019 to present, the BWC has organized and conducted a series of training and workshops for all the ministries and offices on gender and development,” Karon said.
“In 2020-2021, although the COVID-19 pandemic slowed everything, that did not stop us from installing strategic mechanisms because our ministries, offices, and agencies have hired competent people to do the job,” she said.
Karon mentioned that all 29 ministries, offices, and agencies have been capacitated on basic GAD concepts, legal imperatives, gender-responsive policy-making and budgeting, gender in Islam, preparation of GAD plans and budgets, and submission of GAD accomplishment reports including coaching and mentoring.
Karon also highlighted in her speech that BWC, along with different civil society organizations, continue to work together to provide education to the Bangsamoro communities on the practical concept of gender, their rights as women and men in Islam, and the different laws that protect the rights of women and young girls from all forms of violence.
“It is about time that our voices are heard and we make a stand against violence,” she added.
Ending her speech, Karon said BWC will make a stand and uphold the rights of every woman in the Bangsamoro region. “Babae ka! Hindi “Babae lang!”, Together, let us work harder to make BARMM VAW-free,” she said.
Meanwhile, in a video message, Chief Minister Ahod Ebrahim emphasized that the Bangsamoro Government recognizes the crucial contribution of women in strengthening communities, raising and nurturing families, and building nations.
“I affirm that women should be given extra protection,” said Ebrahim.
“I applaud the Bangsamoro Women Commission for organizing this event that demonstrates the Bangsamoro government’s sincerity in defending the rights and welfare of Bangsamoro women and empowering them to lead and protect themselves from various forms of abuse,” he added.
Karon’s SOBWA was the highlight of the region’s kickoff celebration of the 18-day Campaign to End Violence Against Women (VAW), which runs from Nov. 25 – Dec. 12.
During the kickoff ceremony on Nov.25, employees of the Bangsamoro Government participated in an early morning parade to support the campaign. (Myrna Tepadan/BIO)