International Women’s Day (IWD) presents a wonderful opportunity to acknowledge the invaluable contribution women have made to the development and advancement of society and celebrate their social, economic, cultural and political achievement.
Everyone knows that Jamaican women are hard workers who achieve whatever they set their minds to accomplish. The recent International Labour Organisation (ILO) study, that placed Jamaica at the top of the list of countries with the greatest proportion of women in top management positions in the world, substantiates this. That is why I am confident that my administration will gain tremendously from the efforts of our four distinguished female Cabinet Ministers; Jamaica’s second female Attorney General, the Hon. Marlene Malahoo Forte; as well as several new distinguished female Members of Parliament including my beautiful wife, Juliet.
I also wish to join with the new Minister with responsibility for Gender Affairs, Olivia “Babsy” Grange in paying tribute to Lady Bustamante, one of the pioneers who led the way in promoting women’s rights and whose birthday is being commemorated on March 8.
I commend the IWD local theme, ‘Promoting Partnership towards Gender Equality and Sustainable Development’ which supports our National Partnership for Prosperity agenda. As Prime Minister, I have pledged to build real partnerships with the Private Sector, Civil Society, the Diaspora, the Opposition and International Partners in order to achieve the vision of shared prosperity for all Jamaicans – women and men – through inclusive economic growth and meaningful job creation.
Let us partner for a better Jamaica, for gender parity and the development of whole prosperous families in which every little girl and boy can grow up to fulfill their greatest potential and be equally rewarded for their contribution to society.