Female members of the National Assembly sat down with a representative of the UK Parliament yesterday to discuss female participation in politics, on the final day of a consultative meeting hosted by the British Embassy.
There were no men among the 11 lawmakers in attendance, with the chairperson of the Women’s Caucus Khuon Sudary saying they would take part in future events.
During her address, Sudary said challenging gender roles was essential to future progress.
“Women should be able to build a home as well as participate in politics,” she said.
According to caucus vice-chairperson Mu Sochua, such an approach – with women still expected to assume domestic responsibilities – is not counterproductive to the goal of improving female political participation.
“If we said we’re not going to change the diapers of our babies, or cook for our children, would society accept it? We have to work at many, many levels in order for society as a whole to move together,” she said
Female representation among lawmakers in Cambodia and the United Kingdom is comparable, at just over 20 per cent, a fact Deputy Head of Mission at the British Embassy Dr Bryony Mathew said highlighted the event’s mutually beneficial nature.
“They’ve set up this new Women’s Caucus, it’s a fantastic step, a really great example of moving forward,” said Mathew.