La Aum Lyonchhen

The project seeks to inspire and support the political aspirations of Bhutanese women

Just as the next parliamentary elections is around the corner, nationwide media advocacy campaign titled “La, Aum Lyonchhen” designed to encourage women to contest for elections in 2013 is all set to be launched.

Produced with financial assistance from the Danish Institute for Parties and Democracy (DIPD), the project by KCD Production is a continuation of the first of its kind initiative, “Inspiring Bhutanese Women to Lead”, which won the UNDP human development fellowship award 2010.

While the documentary premiere ‘Yes Madam Prime Minister’ (“La, Aum Lyonchen- Lessons from Denmark”) is a key element of the project, a ten episode radio drama series and five television programs including a music television (MTV) focused on challenging traditional gender roles and encourage the women of Bhutan to get involved in politics will also be televised and aired through Bhutan Broadcasting Services (BBS) and Kuzoo FM from September to December.

The documentary which also features the political journey of the Members of Parliament (MP) Karma Lhamo (National Assembly) and Sangay Zam (National Council), delves into the challenges faced by Bhutanese women today and draws lessons from Denmark – which is like Bhutan both a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy.

Denmark has seen noticeable progress ever since women were granted the right to vote in 1915 and especially in 2011, when the first female Prime Minister, Helle Thorning-Schmidt, was elected.

Presently, 40% of the Danish Parliament comprise women including nine ministers and Helle. Denmark was also recently voted as the world’s happiest country, while Bhutan continues to be popularly known for its development philosophy of Gross National Happiness (GNH).

With the 2013 elections a few months away, the title, “La, Aum Lyonchen” was coined to involve interest and open up the possibility that Bhutan may be ready to think of women as leaders in the highest positions.

The project hopes to garner support from policy makers and society to support women candidates to come forward for the upcoming elections in 2013 and beyond.

Earlier, KCD production’s Kesang Chuki Dorjee said, the main objective behind the project is to get policy makers and public to realize that the vast potential of this population is still untapped. “Another is to show the value of having more women decision makers to improve the quality of life in Bhutan,” she added.

Her Royal Highness, Ashi Sonam Dechen Wangchuck will grace the media launch event as the chief guest this Saturday, August 31. Chief election commissioner, Dasho Kunzang Wangdi will be there to deliver the keynote address.

In Bhutan, less than 14% of women represent Parliament, and with the first ever local government elections held in June, 2011, less than 5% of the newly elected local leaders are women.

It was only recently this year that the country had its first women Drangpon (Justice) and a Dzongda (governor). The question that remains is – Is Bhutan ready for a woman Prime Minister?

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16 comments

  1. How pathetic of Bhutan and bhutanese citizen? So cheap that everyone wants to please women, lure them with carrots in hand.
    If women don’t join politics its their choice they do so, who encourages women to run brothels? Cheat their husbands and so on? And why do we need to waste monet and time pleasing these beasts?
    Bhutan should remain different, it is not that there is gender disparity but women know they do better in kitchen than in parlaiment.
    Don’t stoop too low, treat them equal to men. If such innitiatives are not available for men then you are creating disparity. NCWC, RENEW and all such shits, may be we need male-gender-activists, women black mail us, they cheat us, they ruin us and still everyone wants to please them.
    I dont see a good future for my son.

    • Oh my god! Mr. Bhutan 1.0, I say you are one pathetic soul man who have no sense of respect for women. Do you have mother, sister, aunt, daughter or niece or none of them??? If you have them, then i wonder how you take tand treat them! Because of man like you, Renew and NCWC like Agency have come into existence and because of men like you, police and laws were framed to protect the human rights of women and children. Whoever is your mother, wife, daughter or sister, etc should be very sad of having relativity connection with you. You should be termed in my sense as ‘rutheless, barbaric and illiterate man’ for going against minority women clan in our decision making body.

    • Narendra Sangroula

      Why do we need to encourage women ? Many of the gents are going after women like the thirsty bull.. There was no one to encourage Sunita William,or Kalpana Cawla  to be better than man in space. Women can do as good as man but what a fool are they who try to advertise and encourage. But how foolish are the women who get in to Whorehouse,Dance naked to entertain man, Expose out in the name of beauty contest but degrading the self.. Women themselves in  their complex of inferiority mislead their status.. Who are we to uplift them.. They themselves should face the challenges…

  2. Some factual errors: We had women Justice in those days of Dasho Aum Gaki (a former Principal) of Motithang, who served as High Court Justice for about a few years mid 1990s.

  3. samden drup matsug

    Owi Bhutan1.0 i am not pleased to read your sentences saying “these beasts”. Can you dare to call your wife, mother and daughters by such term. I am sure not. Do not try to draw a line like Muslim world. Without your dear mother you would not have been born and made up to this day to give such remark. I can assume that you are still not married or just got rejected by your girl friend so you decided to put your comments in this forum to let her know that.

    No hard feelings.

  4. You have nicely summed up Bhutan 1.0 Why do men need to lug-on the ever lamenting female folks? When they are capable to deceive, cheat and back-stab; why not take the lead onto themselves without being goaded by menfolk? A good suggestion.
    May sound chauvinistic but a male-gender-activism is certainly a good idea. At least we can begin to mull over it.
    Serious

    • Careful Observer

      You should go to Iran or Saudi Arabia! They would love to have you. Alternatively, try having a conversation with my sister, who could beat the sh*t out of you intellectually, culturally, and yes, physically too!

  5. Time has come 4 every women to step out n lead. Men n women are equal. They are bold than ever n daring too. The door is open n they simply need to walk out..come on women of our country, lead like n do like ur counter party..all the best!

    • whatever it is. Let us see the changes, whoever becomes the future Prime Minister of united Bhutan? I don’t really  differentiate between the two genders. Everyone has an equal share and has an equal opportunities in a country where the rights are given to its people within the written or unwritten Constitution. I would really and sincerely appreciate whoever becomes the future Prime Minister of Bhutan

  6. I don’t care who is future Prime Minister. I won’t support woman for premiership just because she is woman. If she is competent and visionary. Nothing is better than woman.

  7. Beware media don’t misinform the readers.LYONCHHEN covers for both genders.Stop using AUM LYONCHHEN when we don’t use AP for male Lyonchhen.It is wrong to use anything before once already given title.

    • ‘La Aum lyonchen’ is a name for a project or so to speak a campaign to encourage women to politics..it’s got nothing to do with addressing any figures or personalities ..so gear up or at least be informed in a broader sense dude!

  8. i m in support of bhutan 1.0 gender equality has been always been in supported in our country so what u want more then that? NCWC and RENEW do more harm then helping the women in society. Even a little quarrel becomes a huge problematic coz of these two called NCWC and RENEW. Ask ourself what good these two have helped to women, rather it is giving women courage to get divorce and later suffer them self, too stupid. Bhutan has become so intimated with other countries although they knew it is not good tend to follow. Yet they do it, that is another stupid.

  9. Bhutan 1.0 speaks lots of sense. I share lot of his ideals

  10. La Aum Lyonchoen is a stupid video despite good intentions. Bad Script, bad direction despite the fact they rope in many famous people….

  11. Bhutan 1.0 is not a man who do not respect women,he is in fact a man who speak of reality,,, who are other peoples to say don’t u have month,,,sister or any things. Ofcourse everyone  has a mom or a sis..but giving an statement about those women who are in reality in the circle or unfaithfulness doesnt mean he doesn’t respect his mom and sis…god damn low grade mentality ,… there is no need to give urcomment upon some ones comment,,,read it read the story…read the comment and give ur thought upon the news line not upon someone comment..

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