‘PERTIWI' Personage Book Launching Ceremony: ‘Sebuah Perjuangan'
A Narrative Ceremony on the History of Pertubuhan Tindakan Wanita Islam Malaysia (PERTIWI)
Tan Sri Datin Paduka Seri Hajah Aishah Ghani
Born on 15 December 1923 in Kampung Sungai Serai, Hulu Langat, Selangor. Received her early education at the Bukit Raya Malay School, Cheras, Selangor before she went on to pursue her secondary education at Diniyah Puteri, Padang Panjang, West Sumatra, Indonesia, from 1936 to 1939. After completing her studies there, she resumed her studies at the Higher Teachers' Training College in Padang, West Sumatra, Indonesia from 1940-1943. Later in April 1955 she pursued her studies at the Regent Street Polytechnic, London until December 1958.
Tan Sri Datin Paduka Seri (Dr.) Hjh. Aishah Ghani is inseparable from the political history of Malaysia. Her initial involvement in politics began with her career as a journalist in Pelita Malaya, the official voice of the Parti Kebangsaan Melayu (PKM) or the Malay Nationalist Party (MNP) and she has led the women's wing of the MNP known as Angkatan Wanita Sedar (AWAS). In 1949 she joined UMNO and was appointed as UMNO Secretary of Kampung Baru. She served as a reporter at the Berita Harian and editor at the New Straits Times Press Group but stepped down from her career when she was elected as the UMNO Supreme Council Member and Vice Chairperson of the UMNO Women. She was the first woman in Malaysia to be appointed to the post of senator in 1963 and was the first female representative of Malaysia to the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN). In 1973, she became Minister of Social Welfare and held the position until 1984.
She was the backbone towards the establishment of PERTIWI in 1967, together with Puan Azah Aziz, Datin Habibah Manan, Puan Sri Zaleha Abdul Jalil and Dato' Hjh. Rahmah Abdul Hamid. Through their discussions, came the idea of setting up an NGO to champion the plight of Muslim women was incepted, due to their feeling that the various bodies or associations that existed at the time are not impactful enough to protect this particular group. Although not directly involved with PERTIWI, she still gave her strong support in all the activities undertaken by this organisation.
Currently, Tan Sri Datin Paduka Seri (Dr.) Aishah Ghani still continues to contribute to the society, especially through the Koperasi Jaya Murni Wanita Berhad where she acts as Chairperson of the cooperative.