Minister of Defence and National Security, Mariya Ahmed Didi has highlighted that joint efforts are needed to build trust and friendships through defence partnerships forged with a shared vision for a rules-based international order which does not sideline women.
She made this remark in her keynote address, delivered at the Commonwealth Women’s Forum’s Session on Women’s Engagement in Peace and Security in Kigali, Rwanda.
This is the first time a Maldivian minister has addressed the Commonwealth Women’s Forum held on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Summit.
As such, the minister stressed that in the present world, where threats and security challenges are highly complex, volatile and hybrid, “no country can defend itself alone”, adding that if the global community is to address these challenges, it cannot “relegate” women to the limitations of society.
We cannot talk about peace and security without us women in the equation. Where there is no peace, it is our homes, our children, our schools, our communities and our livelihoods that are disproportionately affected,”Mariya Didi, Minister of Defence and National Security.
Noting the decision by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih to appoint a record number of women to public office including his Cabinet of Ministers, Minister Mariya shed light on the incumbent administration’s confidence to break the glass ceiling and appoint a woman to lead the country’s defence sector and tackle its “complex” security concerns.
Adding that women holding the reins paves way for the filtration of perspectives and approaches which are both “holistic” and “gender-sensitive”, she said that this results in the spill-over of “positive” outcomes into the “peace” and “security” landscape.
Further, the minister stated the building trust and friendships through partnerships and maintaining peace and security require the five ‘P’s; Patience, Persuasion, Prevention, Passion and Perseverance.
She expressed her belief that women hold these five qualities, “in abundance”.