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Rwanda has 61.3% women in government and Zimbabwe’s has 35 % women in government yet women make 52 percent of Zimbabwe population.
Zimbabwe a country which prides itself in being highly educated in Africa, only has 35 % women in government while Rwanda has 61.3% women representatives in government, despite women in Zimbabwe making up 52% of the population.
At a recent meeting attended by women civic leaders, female MPS along with aspiring MPs, Zimbabwe’s Speaker of Parliarment Jacob Mudenda told hundreds of women in Harare last week that Zimbabweans should now consider adopting their mothers’ surnames in addition as opposed to only using their fathers’ surnames which they traditionally use.
A high profile gender activist Isabella Matambanadzo called upon Zimbabweans to rally behind a civil suit to compel the Zimbabwe government to uphold the constitutional provisions which prescribe a 50-50 gender approach in the government’s leadership structure.
The Speaker of parliarment , Jacob Mudenda spoke in support of the move, adding that it was time that Zimbabweans now adopt their mothers’ surnames instead of traditionally using father’s names.
Mudenda went on to ask “Why do I carry the surname of my father and not of my mother? Why, why!” adding that
“My father did not make me without my mother. In other countries now, they have got barrelled surnames; your name, your mother’s surname-your father’s surname.
Jacob Mudenda also stated that male chauvinism is the worst enemy of your 50-50 campaign movement.
Umzingwane legislator Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga previously said that she is considering adopting her mother’s surname motivated by the fact that it was much easier to identify one’s mother than a father, hence the need to stick to one’s mother’s surname.
One speaker stated that at the slow rate that Zimbabwe is adopting gender parity in leadership structures, it is likely to take the next 50 years before the nation achieves full gender equality.
There were calls for women in the human rights commission to help prepare a docket against the government to register a blatant complaint that there is no 50-50 or gender equality even though there is a constitutional provision set out to this effect.
www.newzimbabwevision.com says women should make use of their numbers to bring change in Zimbabwe. Its obvious that being 52 % of Zimbabwe’s population they not only have influence as teachers, parents, spouses and other opinion leaders like church and other in our communities, therefore they need to make a stand. It doesn not help to sit back and make noise about figures laid out by the constitution just to pleae the women yet nothing is done about gender imbalances in reality.
The government must walk the talk and the start is for women’s groups to influence the vote by withdrawing their vote because women constitute the majority of voters and they can shift the balance of power by withdrawing their vote and even rallying behind female represantatives in parties. If aparty doesnt demonstrate gender balance as laid out by the constitution, it is clear that the same party once voted into power by the women will spear head girl child , women and gender related issues. This is the 21st century and if it takes a massive U-turn by women to shift the retrogressive. third world male dominated, sh*thole countries mentality and give women, recognition, respect, a voice , equality and power amongst us, so be it! More news to follow. By Sibusiso Ngwenya