Making the call at the Appreciation Night gathering for the outgoing MPWS (2015-2016) at Le Meridien, Minister of Community Development and Consumer Affairs, Datuk Jainab Ahmad emphasised the need to see further the needs of women towards bringing about a new development that is worthy of the construction of Wisma Wanita.
"Since becoming Minister in 2013, I have seen the services provided by MPWS over two terms (that is, 2013-2014 & 2015-2016). Most of the programmes implemented were more towards raising awareness.
"Admittedly, it is indeed important and I appreciate what has been done. Nevertheless, I call upon the new Council to transcend the efforts and take women to the next level," she said.
However, Jainab, who is Karambunai Assemblywoman, commended the outgoing MPWS under the leadership of Datuk Mariati Robert for their success in implementing the Council's planned programmes during their term of office.
"We praise and value the contribution of all Council Members and members of the seven Working Committees (Economic, Education, Health, Social, Legal, Gender, and Women and Media Committees).
They worked without any remuneration in providing a voluntary service. Their programmes and activities were also held over weekends or on public holidays," she said.
Advocating collaboration among MPWS, Sabah Council of Social Services (MPMS), and Women & Family Development Council (MPWK) in each parliamentary constituency, Jainab reiterated that this strategy would enable the three bodies to reach out to more women in the State.
"As the Minister responsible for women's development in Sabah, it is incumbent upon me to monitor women's activities under MPWK, apart from MPWS activities. All MPWK Chairpersons together with their respective working teams serve at the grassroots level.
"In this regard, I urge MPWS members to move together with women under MPWK in the 25 parliamentary constituencies in Sabah," she said.
Among the guests were Sabah's first woman minister, Toh Puan Rahimah Stephens, former Minister of Communication and Works, Datuk Dayang Mahani Tun Pengiran Ahmad Raffae, Federal Secretary to Sabah, Datuk Borhan Dolah, Mayor Datuk Yeo Boon Hai, Deputy State Secretary (Administration), Datuk Asnimar Sukardi, and State Health Director Datuk Dr Christina Rundi.
Also present were Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Community Development & Consumer Affairs, Janet Chee and Director of Sabah Women's Affairs Department (Jhewa), Hjh Masnah Matsalleh. - Mary Chin