Fijis Minister for Women Rosy Akbar has commended the contribution made by women living in rural communities towards Fijis socio-economic development.
The Minister made the comments at the International Rural Womens Day celebration, which drew the attention of many women, market vendors and children at the Labasa Civic Centre.
Officiating at the event, the minister highlighted that the day was set aside to pay tribute to those women living in rural communities across the world including Fiji.
The minister said with the collaboration of the United Nations Womens Organization it has ensured that womens rights are enforced and protected.
When women are given access to land there are improvements household welfare, agriculture productivity and gender equality, she said.
The minister also led public consultations in Labasa where more than 100 people sought advice on Governments social welfare and assistance programmes. The programme included the minister leading a team of officials from her ministries holding face-to-face consultations with the northern public.
I can assure you when we return to Suva we will take your issues and will give you and answer in two weeks time, the minister told those who attended the consultations.
73-year-old Satya Kumar said she attended the consultation to find out how she could apply to the welfare scheme and its benefits.
This is very useful for Labasa and all other places, we the people are given the chance to meet the minister and tell her of our problems and seek advice on what we should do, Mrs Kumar said.
The ministry is expected to hold public consultations in other parts of the country soon.