Social Protection Minister Amna Ally on Tuesday announced that the Government is working to ensure that a National Gender and Social Inclusion Policy can be implemented before year end. This policy is intended tackle negative economic, cultural and social practices that hampers equality.“The National Gender and Social Inclusion Policy is expected to be implemented during the second quarter of 2019 and will aim to mainstream gender issues into all sectors in order to eliminate all negative, economic, social and cultural practices that impede equality and equity,” the Minister explained.She added that the policy is likely to strengthen links between the Government, non-governmental organisations and even the private sector to mainstream gender equality in respective sectors. Moreover, the policy will develop, maintain and provide gender sensitive information and gender disaggregated data for the purpose of planning and implementing projects.While speaking on the progress, Guyana has made in relation to gender equality, the Minister pointed out that she was specifically pleased with the representation of women in Parliament, adding that Guyana is well ahead of many developed countries.According to her, 31.9 per cent of seats in the National Assembly is occupied by women.She also boasted that Guyana has met its target of eliminating gender disparity in primary and secondary education. This, she noted, was progress towards achieving universal primary education standards.Meanwhile, the Deputy Programme Manager for Gender and Development at the Caribbean Community (Caricom), Ann-Marie Williams explained that Tuesday’s forum was specifically designed to trace Guyana’s progress in Regional Gender Equality since 1975 through the United Nations Decade for Women.Within that decade, three major conferences were held; the first was hosted in 1975 in Mexico which bore fruit of two documents. The first was the declaration of Mexico and the equality of women and their contribution to development while the second encompassed the world plan of action for the implementation of the objectives of international women’s year.Later on in 1980, the second conference was hosted which was used to report on the previous event. The third conference was held in 1985 which celebrated the accomplishments of the decade of women. It also established an agenda to guide future efforts to promote equality for women, worldwide.Some 10 years later, the Beijing conference was hosted to accelerate the implementation of policies to ensure equality.She said, “We’re taking time out to look at the progress that have been made and also the challenges and we know that within the challenges lie opportunities so as we move towards 25 years of Beijing, it is time for us to literally take stock”.It was explained by her that next year will commemorate 25 years since the fourth World Conference was hosted and Guyana will be responsible for bringing together Governments and other stakeholders to consult on the priority areas that Guyana chose to work on after the Beijing conference.Williams told Guyana Times that a few of the areas Guyana was expected to work on were education, health and women in decision making among others.Guyana, like other countries, she said, will have to report on how they kept the promises they made for women and girls.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has submitted a 6-8-minute video before a court in London to counter the claims of fugitive business tycoon Vijay Mallya that conditions in Mumbai’s Arthur Road jail are poor.Refuting the hygiene-related concerns raised by Mallya, the Indian agency said that cell number 12 of the jail, where he will be lodged after extradition, has not only adequate sunlight but also other facilities like a private toilet and a washing area, NDTV reported.The inmate of barrack number 12 will also have a 40-inch LCD television set, access to a library and a courtyard to walk, the CBI showed in its video. “The court wanted us to show if Indian jails are hygienic. We have given them proof of the hygiene level and medical facilities available in jail. In fact, the barrack in which Mallya would be lodged is east-facing so it has lot of sunlight too,” a senior level official told NDTV. “The cell has cross ventilation with a window and bars on opposite sides. The cell also opens to a courtyard,” he added.The CBI has submitted the video after liquor baron Mallya, who faces extradition to India over accusations of unpaid loans to a consortium of Indian banks, had claimed in court that Indian jails don’t have natural light or fresh air. He had also said in his defense that Indian jails are overcrowded and have poor hygiene conditions.The Indian government had submitted some photographic evidences to show the court that the conditions in the concerned jail are appropriate, but the judge was not convinced.Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot of Westminster Magistrates’ Court then asked the Indian government on July 31 to submit a “step-by-step video” of the barrack, where Mallya was supposed to be held after extradition. The London court gave three months to India for submission of the video, which the CBI filed within a month. The next hearing for this high-profile extradition case is scheduled to be held on Sept.12.If the court gives the judgement in the Indian government’s favor, the UK Home Secretary will have two months to sign Mallya’s extradition order. This verdict may not be the final one, as both sides have a right to appeal in higher courts in the United Kingdom against the judgement. Mallya faces allegations that his Kingfisher Airlines defaulted on loans and interest in 2010, and owes Rs 9,000 crore to a consortium of 17 Indian banks. The Indian government is seeking his extradition after he fled to the United Kingdom in 2016. Related ItemsCBILondonVijay Mallya