Women’s participation weak in Kunduz public sector
KUNDUZ CITY (Pajhwok): Women’s participation in government departments is weak in northeastern Kunduz province where even a single female official could be seen in judiciary organs.
Civil society activists in Kunduz say women have the lowest presence in government departments in violation of the government’s employment rules.
Raheela Shirzad, a civil society activist in Kunduz city, said widespread corruption in government entities and the lack of a safe working environment for women are main problems in Kunduz.
“Women get education and accept hardships, but male officers do not regard women as colleagues and try to use them for personal pleasure,” she said.
A female provincial council member, Fawzia Yaftali also complained the government always promised empowering women but did nothing in practical.
“The government has completely failed in promoting women, the government does not use women’s ability in ensuring good governance,” she said. She asked the Kunduz governor to take decisive action and employ women to local departments.
A women’s activist, Marzia Rustami, said many vacancies reserved for women in Kunduz were just symbolic. “After the collapse of Kudnuz City to the Taliban, the women’s participation in government offices has further weakened. Men are also against the presence of women in offices,” she said.
Kunduz acting Women’s Affairs Director, Naheed Asifi, is the only woman possessing a high government office in the province.
She also confirmed women’s role was colorless in Kunduz and said most of appointments in government departments were based on nepotism rather than merit.
“Except the women’s affairs department, there is no other office to be led by a female director, most of the women work on lower posts with a lower presence.” she said, adding despite the fact the judiciary organs were in need of female employees, but no women could be seen there.
“A woman who faces a legal issue cannot explain her case to men in the judiciary problem, but she can easily explain her case to female employees or judges,” she said.
Governor Asadullah Omarkhil said insecurity and unsafe environment for women were main problems for female employees.
However, he said most employees in education and health sectors were women. He said the security situation was getting better by each passing day and he was committed to encouraging women to work in government offices.
Omarkhil said women were always given first priority in competitive posts, a process he added his administration was supporting.
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