GWERU: Despite Constituting more than 52% of the total population, research indicates that there are various factors affecting the assumption of leadership positions by women in Zimbabwe.
Celebrating International Women’s day under the theme “Breaking the Bias”, various women in the Midlands province were tasked to confidently take up leadership positions in all socio-eco-political aspects of life.
Midlands State University (MSU) gender lecturer Nyevero Maruzane said women lack the necessary confidence that is required to take positions.
“For so many years women are not confident to take up leadership positions of influence they always lag, this year’s theme women should break the bias and stand firm and become goal achievers. Do not expect to get what you want on a silver platter,” said Maruzane.
She added that women must work very hard to be on top not to get leadership posts through sexual favours.
In line with SDG number 5, YWCA has taken the steering wheel in promoting the elimination of violence against women and girls, offering self-sustaining projects and pioneering the curbing harmful cultural practices such as early and forced marriages and female genital mutilation.
YWCA Regional Chairperson Jane Munyamani said women need the necessary freedoms for them not to be overshadowed by men
“Women across the globe are longing to be free and no longer want to live in the shadows. As women we wish for equality, working side by side with men,” said Munyamani.
Representing ZWB Jessina Makore noted that several domestic cases emerge when a woman is not fully empowered.
“Sometimes domestic violence starts when a woman only waits for a man to put food on the table. I urge you fellow women to work for your families,” said Makore.
The 2019 Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) report shows that 39.4% of adolescent girls and women aged 15-49 have experienced physical violence since age 15 and among females aged 15-49 years, 11.6% had experienced sexual violence in their lives.
As the Covid-19 pandemic hit, in 2020, the national gender-based violence hotline run by women’s rights charity Musasa answered nearly 7,000 calls mainly from women in distress, a 40% increase from the previous year.
The Zimbabwean constitution recognizes the value of women through the provision of a special quota for female representation in the National Assembly and the Senate.
The International women’s day (IWD) celebrations in Gweru were held by Young Women Christian Association (YWCA) partnering with various CSOs which include Women ‘s Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCOZ), Zimbabwe Women’s Bureau (ZWB), Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA), Musasa and Ebenezer.