‘Many firsts for Sri Lankan women’ | Daily News
International Women’s Day Messages

‘Many firsts for Sri Lankan women’

Mahatma Gandhi said that woman is a symbol of innocence. Nevertheless, modern women have shown that they can succeed in many fields, conquering the traditional role bestowed upon them by society.

The name of Sri Lanka has been embedded in the political history of the world as the country which produced the world’s first woman Prime Minister. Sri Lankan women succeeded in receiving the right to franchise before many other Asian countries, and the country was able to secure the global honour of producing not only the world’s first woman Prime Minister, but also the world’s first woman Executive President.

A Sri Lankan Marine Biologist was included in BBC’s inspiring and influential women from around the world in 2018; a Sri Lankan research scientist was honoured by the world for her effort in finding the pathway that controls cancer cells; and a Sri Lankan woman’s name was added to the list of women who conquered Mount Everest.

That pride was not something obtained by chance. It is a result of creating a long-term process to ensure that women and the girl child in our country enjoy the equal right to receive nutritional foods, education, and health facilities, as well as to enjoy cultural, social and political rights in a similar manner to those rights enjoyed by men and the male child. However, these efforts should not be limited to the achievements thus far.

Sri Lankan women must be empowered so that all forms of discrimination and violence against women and the girl child are eradicated, they can generate income and take decisions in this regard equal to men, they can go forward to achieve high positions in the political field in a similar way their successes were recorded in the public sector, and they can influence decision making.

I extend my best wishes to the International Women’s Day celebrations held in Sri Lanka with the aim of uplifting women to great heights.

Maithripala Sirisena

President


 

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