Women Abe Selected for his New Cabinet is ``Performance for Public Consumption``

Monday, September 22, 2014

Tokyo - (PanOrient News) Prime Minister Shinzo Abe recently appointed five new female ministers to his cabinet to show that he wants to improve gender equality and revive the economy by promoting women as workers and leaders, "but this personnel selection is a “performance” for public consumption," Tomoko Tamura, an Upper House member from the Communist Party, said.

"Those newly appointed female politicians are not those who have been engaged in promoting gender equality in Japanese society or empowerment of women,” Tamura said in an interview with PanOrient News at her office. “So, I have the impression that their appointment does not really reflect a serious engagement in the empowerment of women by Prime Minister Abe. Instead, it is indeed merely window dressing.”

According to Tamura, LDP female Parliamentarians tend to be very conservative and believe in what they consider to be traditional female roles in Japan, which is for women to be mothers or home makers.

"When there was a gender equality bill proposed to encourage proper sex education for young people in order to increase awareness of women's rights, Eriko Yamatani, the newly appointed Minister in charge of the Abduction issue, strongly opposed it,” Tamura pointed out. “She was even against listing male and female students' names mixed together alphabetically, preferring them listed by gender. Considering that, I don't know what PM Abe really means by saying he’s trying to make greater use of women and promoting them to leadership posts to empower female roles in society."

Noting once again that the female politicians picked by Abe for his Cabinet do not seem to have deep-seated view on gender equality, Tamura expressed strong doubt that the Abe administration is sincerely trying to promote women's empowerment.

Ms. Tomoko Tamura was elected an Upper House member for the first time in July 2010 as a proportional-representation candidate for the Communist Party Japan, for which she also serves as a Central Committee member.

PanOrient News

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