Jakarta – The National Commission on Violence Against Women (Komnas Perempuan) has said that gender inequality remains a major issue in the policies of President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo and Vice President Ma'ruf Amin in the first year of their administration.
Komnas Perempuan commissioner Andy Yentriyani highlighted the extensive number of "all-male panels" at the ministry level, pointing out several ministerial events in which only men were assigned as speakers.
She said the lack of policies on gender equality was reflected in the selection process of independent institutions, in which few women were appointed committee members by the President.
Moreover, Komnas Perempuan also noted the government's sluggish response in handling the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on women in terms of reproductive health services, pregnancy, childbirth and family planning.
"Our study on family dynamics during the pandemic shows that the burden on women is greater than that of men during the crisis," Andy said in a press statement on Thursday.
She said the many burdens experienced by women during the pandemic came as a result of a patriarchal culture within family dynamics.
The first year of Jokowi's second and final term had neglected women's issues, such as the settlement of past human rights abuses that saw women as the victims, Komnas Perempuan commissioner Alimatul Qibtiyah said.
"A similar situation was also faced by female victims of religious intolerance, which, according to our data, has impacted more community groups in 2020," she said.
The commission urged Jokowi and Ma'ruf to develop policies that boost equality and justice in regard to women's leadership and the provision of basic services that take into account the vulnerability of women who face discrimination.
Komnas Perempuan called on the government to strengthen cooperation between ministries, agencies and the public by supporting gender mainstreaming policies to overcome gender inequality, which is often exacerbated and justified by a misogynist interpretation of religion. (aly)