September 24, 2017

Women’s role in peace stressed

State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. Photo: MNA

On International Women’s Day, State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi highlighted the role of women in the peace-making process, urging women who are taking part in economic sectors to make the best use of their wealth and proficiency in business for the peace of the country.
Speaking at the ceremony in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday to mark International Women’s Day 2017, the State Counsellor said she wanted women to think about how their economic might and the sheer number of female entrepreneurs could be used for the peace and stability of the country, stressing that peace is of great importance not
only in Myanmar but also for the world.
“It is not wrong for entrepreneurs to give priority to their businesses. Only if they are successful in their own sector will they be on the right path. But I think that peace is of great importance not only for our country but for the whole world. So, I want our women to think deeply as to how their economic strength and the strength of the entrepreneurs will be employed for the whole nation’s peace and the whole world’s peace and stability,” she said.
The State Counsellor also revealed her opinion on whether brute force or brainpower are more effective.
“Every civilised person regards that the truth is the strength and they do and say as regarded by them. Contrariwise, uncivilised ones regard that the strength is the truth. In this way, they are not convinced any longer what the truth is, before they realise it. They come to rely upon brute strength,” said Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.
She also expressed her views that the country’s mass of women should take 50 per cent of responsibility for the peace, as they are also taking part in 50 per cent of the economic sector of Myanmar.
She continued to say that peace does not come from a meeting room, but from the heart and brain, and women can help a lot in this sector by actively participating in the peace process. She reiterated that Myanmar women entrepreneurs should think about how they can support the country’s peace process.
The ceremony was held under the world-wide theme “Women in the Changing World of  Work: Planet 50-50 by 2030.
“I want to extend my gratitude to all the generous donors and business owners who have supported our effort for national reconciliation and the peace process. This not only helps in our peace process but also in the business sector too. The same is true to a certain degree in other underdeveloped and developed countries.”
“Most successful and wealthy business owners look down upon those with less wealth and focus only on accumulating wealth for self-interest. Our wealth should be for the nation and by displaying the capabilities of business owners and women entrepreneurs we can boost the economic sector,” said the State Counselor.
She further stated that all citizens should prioritize success for businesses and show how to use it to help others. It is important to design a business model so as to bring a balance between charity work and self-interest, because only in harmony can they be a truly powerful force. It is not true that only the economic sector should be a priority in developing a nation. In fact, economics and politics, politics and social affairs, social afairs and peace are all interconnected. If you were to utilise your business to support the welfare of others, it will undoubtedly boost your own business as well.
“We all need to work hand in hand. Men need to work to the best of their capabilities to elevate women status and support them and women are also obliged the same. Do not underestimate yourself or others.

State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi visits booth showcasing women’s handiwork at International Women’s Day Ceremony for 2017 in Nay Pyi Taw. Photo: MNA

I want to ask the men not to underestimate women or yourselves too, especially the young men of this generation, to try harder not to fall behind women in the education sector. Only then will our country have a fair and equal future. This year’s goal is the economic sector with the motto, “Empowering women entrepreneurs for a better world in 2030.” The main determiner in shaping the world for the better is our mind. Financially you can only do so much, but to steer the world in the direction of peace, compassion, love and kindness we have to start with changing our minds first. I want to request the women of this country to lead us in changing what we need to change and doing what we need to do in this endeavour.”
Union Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement Dr Win Myat Aye stated that of the 51.4 million citizens in Myanmar, 49.2 per cent are male and 51.8 per cent are female. With women representing the majority of the population, they are a potential powerhouse in major changes and development in our country, which is why it is the duty of the State to dispel gender discrimination and is working with UN groups, International non-government groups, local NGO’s, and civilian groups in this matter.
“On the never-ending road towards gender equality and empowering women and girls alike, it is important that everyone contributes to ensure security and peace for women, and actively take part in national schemes implemented set by Myanmar Women’s Affair Federation and Ministries, Organizations from UN to also aid in women’s role and activity”, the Union minister said.
After the ceremony, the State Counselor and officials looked round the exhibition of photos showcasing women’s developmental works, women and childcare movements, livelihood training workshops for women, and items from women’s handiwork workshops and trainings.— Myanmar News Agency

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