Brunei Darussalam assumed the presidency of the ASEAN Confederation of Women’s Organisations (ACWO) following a handover ceremony to the 20th ACWO Board of Directors for the term 2021-2022 yesterday.
President of Council of Women of Brunei Darussalam (CWBD) Datin Hajah Siti Hajar binti Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Setia Dato Paduka Haji Mohd Yusof in her capacity as the 20th ACWO President received the ceremonial necklace and the ASEAN flag from Acting High Commissioner of the Republic of Singapore to Brunei Darussalam Raymond Chow at the Meeting Room of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium.
During the handover ceremony, held virtually due to COVID-19, Datin Hajah Siti Hajar said, “Today CWBD is honoured to be given the privilege of taking over the ACWO presidency for the third time.
“As the president of CWBD, I Pam honoured and grateful to be representing CWBD to be the incoming president of ACWO come 2021.
“This presidency could not have come at a better time as in 2021, Brunei Darussalam will be the Chair of the ASEAN Summit.
“CWBD will continue to cooperate and work together with our sister national women NGOs in ASEAN member countries for peace, stability and prosperity.”
Brunei Darussalam previously assumed presidency during the leadership of former presidents Datin Hajah Masni binti Haji Mohd Ali and Datin Hajah Fatimah binti Dato Paduka Seri Setia Haji Abang Razali in 1992 to 1994 and 2004 to 2006.
Meanwhile, outgoing ACWO president June Goh said, “For the ACWO activities from 2018 to 2020, we had the pleasure of hosting you in Singapore on March 22 last year for our first board meeting where we had much inspiring and fruitful ideas thereby setting the direction for the term.”
At the 35th ASEAN Summit in Thailand in November 2019, the chairman said they supported the vision of ACWO to leverage on the network and bridge the advantages of smart technologies for women, to enhance the quality of women’s lives and ageing and to empower women in the economy.
The outgoing ACWO president said, “It was a huge milestone for ACWO as our efforts in women’s empowerment and advancement are being recognised.
“It provided us with much visibility on the digital platform and an endorsement of our work.
“We must continue this momentum to strengthen our position in working for women in our communities.”
Singapore Focal Point for Asean Committee on Women Richard Tan said, “ASEAN recognises ACWO as an important and powerful network of national women’s organisations. As an ASEAN accredited agency and entity, your network can shape and influence the public and private sectors in ASEAN member states for the cause of women.”
Earlier, ASEAN member states present proposals of projects as outcomes of the ACWO Masterclass 2020 during the 19th ACWO Biennial General Assembly and Confederation Council virtual meeting.
The meeting also discussed the ACWO Masterclass Report 2020, which was organised by the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations (SCWO) in September 16 and 17.
The ACWO Masterclass is based on the ACWO Vision Statement 2025 and it reflects ACWO determination and commitment to work with women across ASEAN member states to bring the ASEAN Community Vision for 2025 into reality.
The Masterclass covered three topics namely advancing ASEAN Smart Nation cities, enhancing quality of women’s lives in ageing and women and entrepreneurship.
Vice President II Datin Hajah Masni binti Haji Mohd Ali and Vice President III Hajah Kertini binti Orang Kaya Paduka Setia Diraja Abang Haji Abu Hanifah as well as other senior members from CWBD and permanent representatives of 13 associations affiliated with CWBD also attended.