PNG's top woman diplomat Bogari gets award from US government

15/03/2012 16:49



Lucy Bogari gets her award from US Embassy Chargé d'Affaires

ad interim Bryan Hunt


Papua New Guinea's top woman diplomat Lucy Bogari has been awarded the the US Embassy's 2012 Secretary’s Award for International Women of Courage.

The award was presented at a special ceremony in Port Moresby March 14 by Chargé d'Affaires ad interim Bryan Hunt presided. Guests included high commissioners and ambassadors, business executives, PNG government officials, women leaders and leaders of women’s organizations.

Announcing the award, Mr Hunt noted that advancing the status of women and girls is essential to achieving global peace and prosperity which is the cornerstone of American Foreign Policy. President Obama and Secretary Clinton have repeatedly underscored that promoting the rights of women must be fully integrated into the formulation and conduct of U.S. foreign policy.

Echoing Secretary Clinton, Mr Hunt noted that championing women’s equality is not only the right thing to do; it is the smart thing to do.

He noted that investments in improving the lives of women have been shown to strengthen communities and lead to economic growth said the American Embassy committee had selected Ms Bogari, who is currently Acting Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Trade Secretary, for the 2012 award based on her significant contributions to changing the status of Papua New Guinean women both inside and outside of government.

Ms Bogari, said Mr Hunt, throughout her impressive diplomatic and civil service career, has been a pioneer and an important role model for women in PNG. A generation of Papua New Guinean women has witnessed the trailblazing role in policy formulation that Ambassador Bogari has played at the top echelons of the Papua New Guinean government. .

Ms Bogari has used her position to demand greater opportunities and more equitable treatment for women in Papua New Guinea’s civil and diplomatic services and advocated for her government to adopt a global foreign policy that promotes the rights of women.

She has been a leader within her own government and internationally pressing for greater action to combat human trafficking and assist its victims; to end the scourge of domestic violence; and to adopt development policies that focus on women and families and remains a passionate advocate for improving the lives of rural women in Papua New Guinea and continues to serve as a mentor to women and youth leaders from these communities.

The International Women of Courage Award is presented annually by the United States Department of State to women around the world who have shown leadership, courage, resourcefulness and willingness to sacrifice for others, especially for better promotion of women's rights. Papua New Guinea’s previous award recipients were Dame Carol Kidu (2007), Helen Samilo (2008), Sr. Lorraine Garasu (2009), Dr. Betty Lovai (2010) and Betty Higgins (2011).