Bashar Zeiter, Ms. Vera Yammine, Minister Wafaa Dika Hamze, Dr. Dima Dabbous (taken by Noor Abu Tarraf)

Women’s Day At LAU

The journalism club in LAU planned an event about “The Role of Women in Our Society” on Wednesday March 1 with guests Minister Wafaa Dika Hamze, Ms. Vera Yammine, and Dr. Dima Dabbous.

The event started with questions from the student commentator and president of the journalism club, Bashar Zeiter, towards the guests to shed light on the woman’s role in society and in politics since there is a lack of rights and movements towards women in Lebanon from the government.

The reason why LAU decided to organize such an event is because this institution wishes to not only educate young women but also to empower them after they graduate. Dean of students Raid Mohsen assures this by saying:

“The LAU clubs and specifically the Intersectional Feminist Club’s activities aim at empowering women in all the domains; politics is one of those domains.”

The LAU clubs and specifically the Intersectional Feminist Club’s activities aim at empowering women in all the domains; politics is one of those domains.The LAU clubs and specifically the Intersectional Feminist Club’s activities aim at empowering women in all the domains; politics is one of those domains.

Since the parliament elections are around the corner, the journalism club wanted to encourage people to push women to involve themselves in the elections, and to be an active participant in society. And to teach people what is the parliament quota from the 50s and it has not be applied yet; which is insisting a special administrations for women in parliament. From an interview with Bashar Zeiter says:

“The club wanted to enlighten the fact that women’s rights do not only consist of physical liberation, but also politically, respected by law, religion, and logistically.”

The event started with questions towards Ms. Yammine about the politics and most importantly elections. Ms. Yammine shed light on the fact that in politics, if we found women in politics, we will find the movement of men simply inheriting their positions to their daughter or female family members. Yammine also verified how Lebanon has given other countries the perception that their politics are backwards, and in these past years we have found only one woman in parliament, and only once have we had two women in parliament.

Vera Yammine (taken by Noor Abu Tarraf)

“Women only exist to fill the visual gaps.” Yammine says.

Yammine also ensured “there is no solution only through elections according to skillful relativity.”

The next questions were asked to Dr. Dabbous. Dabbous’ topics were mostly about how although women are asked and advised about important matters, when it comes about decisions on personal matters, divorce, and marriage, women have no say.

Dr. Dima Dabbous (taken by Noor Abu Tarraf)

“The problem is in the mentality, so they should arrange a body of women in order they can be the key of decisions.”

And that what assured while interviewing member of the Women’s comity Maha Nammour by saying:

“What’s keeping women from intervening in politics and social matters is that she has to attend to her own family. There are women still out there that need further education about their own abilities in higher power”.

Bashar asked the Minister Hamze about civil laws that includes all sects and especially about women’s right involved in these laws, she says:

“The personal matters in the Man’s hand.”

The minister assured the audience “how that everyone should be equal in rights, not only between men and women, but also between one man and another in order to end discrimination.”

Minister Wafaa Dika Hamze (taken by Noor Abu Tarraf)

She also shed light on how there is a ministration for women’s rights and matters. The advantage is that there is involvement in the ministry; the prime minister says there cannot be elections without a quota.

“The Lebanese citizens’ priorities do not involve women’s rights.”

These three guests focused on the enquiry that the solution is extremely on how women must be defended, protected, and respected from every part of society; may it be man or another woman in politics, social matters, and decision making. Women must also have every right as a human being and not as a female gender.

Distributing trophies to the guests (Noor Abu Tarraf)
Audience attending (Noor Abu Tarraf)

References:

Interview with the Dean of students Raid Mohsen

Interview with of the Women’s comity Maha Nammour

Interview with the president of the Journalism club Bashar Zeiter

Alami, M. (2015) Parliamentary presence sticking point for Lebanon’s women , Retrieved from: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/en/contents/articles/originals/2015/03/lebanon-women-access-parliament-death-relative.html

Freedom House, Women’s Rights in the Middle East and North Africa (2010) LEBANON MENA Gender Equality Profile Status of /girls and Women in the Middle East and North Africa, Retrieved from: https://www.unicef.org/gender/files/Lebanon-Gender-Eqaulity-Profile-2011.pdf

Khalife, N. (2009) A Woman’s Place, in Lebanon. Retrieved from: https://www.hrw.org/news/2009/07/02/womans-place-lebanon

Khoury, D. (2016) Why we need Women Empowered for Leadership in Lebanon. Retrieved from: https://www.hivos.org/blog/why-we-need-women-empowered-leadership-lebanon

Khoury, D. (2013) Women’s political participation in Lebanon. Retrieved from: https://www.boell.de/en/2013/07/25/womens-political-participation-lebanon

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