ISLAMABAD: The Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives (CPDI) in collaboration with Individualland (IL) Wednesday organized a one-day seminar on ‘CSOs engagement session’ with Federal and Provincial Institutions for Social Inclusion.
The event marks a significant milestone to foster collaborative partnerships and effective dialogue between the provincial, federal institutions and civil society, said a press release.
During introductory remarks, Mukhtar Ahmad Ali, Executive Director CPDI emphasized the pivotal role of inclusive governance in driving progress.
He underscored the indispensable role of the Right to Information (RTI) in promoting transparency and accountability. Additionally, he highlighted the significant impact of the establishment of Information Commissions, which served to streamline and facilitate the process of accessing vital information.
Zahid Abdullah, RTI advisor to CPDI brought attention to a critical issue through his comprehensive report “The Invisibility of Women with Disabilities in National Data Sets: Gender Disparities in Access to Disability-Insignia CNICs.”
His findings revealed a stark contrast: among the 592,072 disabilityinsignia #CNICs issued across the nation, a significant gender gap emerged, with 420,715 issued to males and a notably lower count of 171,357 issued to females.
Aqal Sajjad, a distinguished Research Fellow at Arizona University, emphasized the pivotal role of local government, delving into its significance from both national and international vantage points.
Notably, he highlighted the vital function of local governance in cultivating effective and ethical leadership.
He also underscored the indispensable nature of citizen consultation as a cornerstone of authentic democratic processes.
Shoaib Siddique, Chief Information Commissioner at Pakistan Information Commission, provided a comprehensive update on the progress of the RTI Act 2017. He commended CPDI and CSOs for their proactive engagement in exercising their right to access information. He also emphasized the crucial role of empirical studies in assessing the influence of RTI laws on citizens’ access to information.
Utilizing data-driven insights, we could fortify transparency measures and enhance citizen empowerment, he added.
Imran Javed Qureshi, Legal Advisor to Punjab Commission on the Status of Women (PCSW), underscored the crucial role of the PCSW in assessing government policies for gender equality.
Operating as a key governmental entity in Punjab, the PCSW prioritizes women’s rights and empowerment across diverse societal domains.
Rehana Sheikh, Gender Advisor to CPDI, emphasized the importance of empowering women through enhanced access to protection schemes and skill development.
She highlighted the significance of Local Government Dialogues in creating space for women in local governance, fostering conversations with past and future representatives.
Manzoor Masih, an esteemed representative of the National Commission on Human Rights (NCHR), provided a comprehensive understanding of the NCHR’s structure and its pivotal role to the attentive participants.
Sarwat Jehan, Project Manager CPDI, eloquently unveiled the visionary initiative “Citizens for Good Governance” to the participants, emphasizing its pivotal objectives.
She underscored the transformative role that the project has played in bolstering the capacity of the civil society.