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No representation of women, minorities in Balochistan cabinet

No representation of women, minorities in Balochistan cabinet

QUETTA: The provincial coalition government headed by Dr Abdul Malik Baloch has not inducted any minister from women and minority groups into the 14-member cabinet.

The Balochistan Assembly has 12 women members — 11 on reserved seats and Rahat Bibi Jamali elected on a general seat from Jaffarabad. Three minority MPAs were chosen on reserved seats.

This is the second time in the parliamentary history of Balochistan that women and religious minorities have not been given representation in the cabinet. There was no woman or minority minister in the first elected government of Balochistan headed by Sardar Attaullah Mengal that was formed in 1972.

Women MPAs expressed their reservations over lack of their representation in the cabinet.

They said the National Party was considered to be a strong supporter of women’s rights and their representation in democratic institutions.

The Pakhtunkhwa Milli Awami Party and the Muslim League-N have also not nominated any woman or minority MPA as minister.

“It will be an injustice with the women of Balochistan that a man will head the ministry of women development,” a senior woman legislator said.

“At least the woman elected on a general seat after defeating male candidates should have been inducted into the cabinet,” Dr Ruqayya Hashmi of the PML-Q said.

The minority MPAs were also unhappy over having been ignored by the coalition partners.

DAWN

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