Press Conference on the ’Gender Sensitivity” Issue of the National Budget for the Financial Year 2023–24

On 14th June 2023 (Wednesday), at 11:00 AM at Tofazzal Hossain Manik Mia Hall, National Press Club, Topkhana Road, Dhaka, a press conference was held, under the initiative of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP), to express the reaction on the issue of gender sensitivity of the announced national budget for the financial year 2023-24.

The press conference was presided over by the president of the organization, Dr. Fauzia Moslem.
More than 100 of people, including Leaders of the central committee, journalists from print and electronic media, and representatives of the organization all attended the press conference.
In the welcome speech, General Secretary Maleka Banu said, the gender budget does not allocate any bulk for women. Gender-sensitive budgeting is how the allocated budget will play a role in reducing the disparity between men and women. BMP has been agitating for a long time to make the budget gender sensitive. She demanded a close inspection during the implementation of the gender budget and strongly demanded to determine the necessary actions in the light of it.

In response to journalists’ questions, Dr. Saima Haque Bidisha, Professor, Department of Economics, University of Dhaka, said-
The budget analysis relies on some visible indicators. Emphasis should be placed on working to change overall gender norms, making the curriculum gender-friendly. Women should have rights to education and wealth.

Dr. Fauzia Moslem, in her speech, emphasizes that strong women’s movement is needed for women’s empowerment, equality, and elimination of discrimination. Gender budgeting came about because of the women’s movement. Social norms are still not gender-friendly, and gender budgets are not enough to accelerate women’s empowerment. Allocations should be increased for projects that are contributing to the development of women. She said that in the light of the gender budget, there is no change in people’s quality of life despite the infrastructure development. In the budget criteria, no importance has been given to the prevention of child marriage and dropout of girls. Commission on the status of women should be made. It is important to change the discriminatory attitudes of all at the policy-making level. Emphasis should be placed on fundamental changes in society. More work should be done in unison to ensure women’s housework and property rights.
This program was conducted by Rabeya Khatun Shanti.

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