As part of the 4th WIBCON (Women in Business Conference), an ‘International Women Leaders’ Summit’ was organised by the Pakistan Society for Training and Development (PSTD), on January 26, at the Karachi Marriott Hotel. The day-long event comprised a series of speeches and panels, conducted by Pakistani high-achievers such as Ayesha Tammy Haq and Dr Huma Baqai, and addressed the issues regarding the advancement and empowerment of women and the challenges confronting them in the social, political and economic sector.
Prominent speakers included Rachel Kyte, Vice President, Sustainable Development at the World Bank, who stressed the need for more women political leaders and entrepreneurs in the peace process. Dr. Sema Suvurioglu from Turkey spoke on the relevance of spirituality to the lives of the modern woman. Marvi Memon, in a televised address, expressed the social responsibility of the privileged to help the plight of rural women.
On the eve of her Oscar nomination, Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy garnered perhaps the biggest applause for her efforts in voicing the plea of the oppressed and abuse-stricken women of Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Afghanistan and now Pakistan with her documentary Saving Face.
Panel discussions discussed the role of corporate organisations in the promotion of gender diversity, showcased local entrepreneur success stories and highlighted the success of women in the public and private sector. The event, packed with much adrenaline and a distinct ‘sisterhood’, propelled the women-empowered cause to a thoughtful end.