First of all good morning and permit me to wish you all the very best. We felt the need to come and see you today on the occasion of International Women’s Day. But I must tell you that AKEL doesn’t think of working women in different fields just today. It is a continuation of our efforts, in the sense that we try through the political proposals we submit to ensure equality on the other hand and on the other to defend all the rights that women must have, especially in societies that maintain strong patriarchal views. However, we must admit that within the capitalist system women are exploited in numerous ways.
We chose to come here to the General Hospital not by chance. You are the women who – in addition to the problems you face at home and many responsibilities you assume in the family – have taken on a huge responsibility over the last year – doctors, nurses and non-permanent staff – all together to help confront the pandemic. We want to say a big thank you to you all. Of course, words aren’t enough. We want to express this ‘thank you’ in practice with initiatives that AKEL will undertake and with the proposals we will submit both inside and outside the Parliament to ensure that your working conditions and means at your disposal will become much better so that you can more effectively and safely carry out your important work.
I don’t want to say too much because I believe in words but in practical actions and deeds. That is why I express, once again, our immense appreciation for the work you are all doing. The obligation we undertake, have always and will continue to undertake is to try to struggle with you so that women take the position they rightly deserve in Cypriot society.
Let me say of course again that we don’t make empty pledges. What we say we turn into action. Our position towards you and that’s how it should be for each of us, stems from our own philosophy and ideology. We believe that women must have the same position as men in society. I would say that on a great number of issues you are far better than men. We need to struggle together so that society recognises as you really are. As far as AKEL is concerned, let me make it clear that we consider you exactly equal to men, no difference whatsoever.
I don’t want to say much. I repeat, we are more interested in expressing our gratitude and proving in practice through our initiatives that what we say isn’t mere empty talk, but conscious political positions.