Statement by the Indonesian Delegation, Half-day discussion on women’s equality before the law – the 15th Session of the Human Rights Council

September 20, 2010 Human Rights and Humanitarian Issues

Mr. President,

Madame Deputy High Commissioner,

Distinguished Panelists,

On behalf of my delegation, I would like to thank the panelists for their presentations today and also convey my gratitude to the President and the Human Rights Council for convening this important discussion during the 15th session.

My delegation aligns itself with the statement made by Pakistan on behalf of the OIC.

As the panelists highlighted, the thematic report, prepared by the Office of the High Commissioner raised some pertinent points about gender discrimination and the way in which this issue is addressed through the UN system.

In relation to the recommendations for greater affirmative action, Indonesia supports the establishment of quota systems within the education, economic, political and labour sectors and also recognizes the need for the improved monitoring system of gender mainstreaming into national legislation.

Indonesia fully agrees that women should play more influential roles in formulating government policy and we support and commend the establishment of the Female Parliamentary Caucus which encourages more pro-female legislation and participation.

Mr. President,

Indonesia places enormous importance on the equality of all citizens before the law and our National Constitution ensures the participation of all in the political process. Indonesia has made significant progress in efforts to ensure women are given the same opportunities as their male counterparts and their talents and potential are developed to the full.

Over the past decade, there have been significant changes regarding the rights and opportunities for women in the national political arena.     Between 2001 and 2004, Indonesia had a female President and in recent years, senior government posts such at the Minister of Trade and Minister of Health have been held by women.

The amendment of various existing national quotes and legislation is one example.  An additional clause to the 2008 law on Political Parties stipulated a 30% quota of female participation in the political party structure and 2008 law on Election Procedures for Members of Regional Legislative Bodies also set a quota for the number of women standing as legislative candidates.

The Indonesian Government is also in the process of redrafting a Draft Law on Gender Equality, the provisions of which will influence the executive branch, the legislature, the judiciary, universities and the private sectors.

Mr. President,

Allow me to ask a question to the panelists. Taking into account the existing legislations on affirmative actions while at the same time, challenges faced due to lack of education among women, what effective practical measures that the Government can pursue to boost the confidence of the women themselves, so that they are able to participate more actively in many sectors of life.

Thank you.

Geneva, 20 September 2010