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We need more women politicians: Vakatale

March 27, 2014 7:04 pm

Taufa Vakatale, who was the country’s first female Deputy Prime Minister, says women need to be leaders in Fijian politics.

Vakatale believes one way to ensure there is a proper representation of women in Parliament is for them to form a political party and participate in the upcoming elections.

The former school teacher and now retired politician says she hopes to see political parties including women candidates to contest the 2014 elections.

“I would like to encourage them to come forward and offer themselves as candidates and why not, in a political party if we have more women participants then it is good. At the same time I would like to encourage women to vote for political parties that stands for women, ask the political parties what stand do they have on women and what policies do they have on women.”

When asked about women’s abilities as leaders, Vakatale says women have a unique sense of leadership.

“I see women are so talented and vocal nowadays, they do things, they offer themselves to do things, without being paid, they are much better than me during my time.”

Reflecting on her political career, Vakatale still remembers she had to work hard and fight her way through.

“The men weren’t taking women issues seriously, they used to laugh when I used to say about women issues, but I felt I was better than most of the men in the parliament.”

The veteran politician is also urging current women leaders to play a role in educating other women about the need to have a greater say at leadership levels.