Papua New Guinea's first female judge Justice

By NBC

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Wed 06 Mar 2013

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Papua New Guinea
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PORT MORESBY, PNG ----Papua New Guinea's first female judge Justice Catherine Davani will be among dignitaries in the capital of South Australia Adelaide today to join celebrations this week marking International Women's Day.

The event titled "In Conversation with Justice Catherine Davani" will see the judge giving an address at the University of South Australia under the theme "Ending Violence Against Women".

The event is organized by the UN Women Australia Adelaide Chapter, a National Committee for UN Women in Australia and is one of 18 National Committees globally.

Justice Davani will be speaking and discussing her experiences within the legal system in PNG.

The United Nations reports over 1000 events worldwide to mark the International Womens Day.

More than 300 events are planned for the United Kingdom, while Australia will host more than 170 events across the country, from guest speakers to community festivals to luncheons and choirs and comedy as it rises to celebrate the International Womens Day with the world.

A key event on Thursday will be the address of Governor General Quenti Bryce in Melbourne.

In an ealier video address posted on YouTube, Ms. Bryce says the International Womens Day is for women to believe in themselves of achieving anything in life, and to empower their fellow sisters who are powerless.

Bryce described the violence against women in PNG as at pandemic levels, urging the UN Women Australia, to which she is patron to do all its best to help in addressing the issue.

The UN Women Australia says over 60-percent of PNG women experience violence in their lives, and events such as these are planned to raise money that will go towards its Critical Services Initiative or CSI programs in PNG.

National Council of Women President for PNG Scholar Kakas says, they are organizing similar celebrations for the country at the end of this month, and a national gathering in Mount Hagen in April, where a petition will be presented to the government.

Papua New Guinea has made gains in the issue of violence against women, but the world spotlight swooped back back on the country following last month's public burning of a woman in Mount Hagen alleged to be a sorcerer.

Kakas says the gain in the CEDAW or the UN Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women, is a move in the right direction, urging relevant government agencies to work in progressing it to being realized in the country.

Another promising sign of the changes and an hopeful address to the issue is the transfer of the Womens Ministry which has been moved fronm the Department of Youth, Religion and Community Development to be under the watch of the Prime Minster and the National Executive Council.


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