Prime Minister Hun Sen has appealed to all political parties to encourage women to assume leadership roles to promote gender equality in the Kingdom’s political affairs and public service.
"Political parties should increase the number of females in politics by giving them the opportunity to stand at the top of candidate lists in commune and national elections," said Hun Sen, speaking during yesterday’s National Forum on Women Leaders in the Public Sector and Politics, attended by 750 women in official positions across all levels.
He also called on government ministries to further investigate obstacles barring women from a fuller role in the country’s development as the "equal partners of men".
Sonket Sereyleak, a local election monitor from NGO Comfrel who participated in the forum, said that the government was not making genuine efforts to bridge the gender gap.
"The government’s talk about gender is good, but it lacks actual commitment and has no clear policy written into a law," she said, pointing to past unmet gender quotas.