8 Mar 2006

PNG minister says women now worse off than in past

2:29 pm on 8 March 2006

A Papua New Guinea cabinet minister says many women in the country are probably worse off than their grandmothers were.

Speaking to mark International Women's Day, Community Development Minister, Dame Carol Kidu, told the Post Courier newspaper that the rights of millions of women in the country were abused regularly.

Many women, she said, now carry greater burdens and responsibilities but often have less authority in decision-making than traditionally.

Dame Carol asked how Papua New Guineas girls and women could develop their capacities when they are so often subject to violence and abuse, even within their own families.

She said today's women were probably worse off than their grandmothers and great-grandmothers who were protected by customs and traditional behaviour protocols that no longer exist today'.