Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians Asia Region discuss impediments and challenges facing women in politics at 5th CPA Asia Regional Conference in Pakistan  

A seminar for Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) has been held for women Members at the 5th Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Asia Regional Conference from 29 July to 2 August 2019 in Islamabad, Pakistan. The seminar was attended by the Speaker of the National Assembly of Pakistan, Hon. Asad Qaiser and the Chairperson of the CPA International Executive Committee, Hon. Emilia Lifaka, MP, Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly of Cameroon.

Delegates discussed the challenges and impediments against women in politics in the region and a wide range of connected topics including the male dominant party structures; general seat versus reserved seats for women; and prioritising women issues as national issues.

Hon. Dr Fehmida Mirza, Federal Minister of Pakistan and CPA Asia Regional Representative on the CPA International Executive Committee spoke about the role of women in Pakistan in politics and her experiences as both a Speaker and Minister in Pakistan. Hon. Munaza Hassan, MNA, CWP Steering Committee Member for the Asia Region spoke about the work of the Pakistan Women’s Parliamentary Caucus; Hon. Shireen Mazari, Pakistan’s Minister for Human Rights spoke about women’s empowerment; and Hon. Jalia Bintu, MP spoke about her experience as a women Member of the Parliament of Uganda.

Ahead of the CWP Asia Region seminar, a specially convened meeting of the Pakistan Women’s Parliamentary Caucus was held with senior delegates and was also attended by the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) Chairperson, Hon. Dr Dato’ Noraini Ahmad, MP (Malaysia) and former CWP Chairperson and current CPA President Designate, Rt Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, MP, Speaker of the Parliament of Uganda.

The Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, Mr Akbar Khan attended the 5th CPA Asia Regional Conference and was delighted to meet with former Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) Chairperson, Ms Kashmala Tariq in Pakistan who is continuing to campaign for women’s rights in her role as Federal Ombudsperson for the Protection Against Harassment of Women in the Workplace.

Please click here for images from the seminar. 


Updated 2nd August 2019.

The Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) was founded in 1989 to increase the number of female elected representatives in Parliaments and legislatures across the Commonwealth and to ensure that women’s issues are brought to the fore in parliamentary debate and legislation. The network campaigns for gender equality in all spheres. 

The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association connects, develops, promotes and supports Parliamentarians and their staff to identify benchmarks of good governance and the implementation of the enduring values of the Commonwealth. The CPA is an international community of around 180 Commonwealth Parliaments and Legislatures working together to deepen the Commonwealth’s commitment to the highest standards of democratic governance. 
For further information about the CPA, please contact:

Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
CPA Headquarters Secretariat,  
Richmond House,
Houses of Parliament,
London SW1A 0AA,
United Kingdom

T: +44 (0)20 7799 1460
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