One of the most well-developed civil society networks in Malaysia is that formed by women. This is testament to their abilities of organisation and coordination, which are certainly attributes that other issues-based groups should also develop.
The Selangor Women’s Affairs portfolio is led by YB Rodziah Ismail. Under the previous Barisan Nasional-led state government, it was possible for the state’s women’s portfolio to receive significant support and funding directly from the federal Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development. Because of the Pakatan Rakyat’s (Pakatan) entry as the new state government, it became necessary for the state to develop its own programmes and policies for the 2.59 million women in Selangor, since previous support to this cause was no longer forthcoming. Furthermore, an independent portfolio, with its own self-developed and self-executed policies and programmes, promised to reflect the vision Pakatan has for its women nationally.
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