The Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) has joined the nation and the rest of the international community in celebrating the International Women’s Day today, with calls to provide equal space and opportunities for women to shine.
The day is running under the theme, “Think Equal, Build Smart, Innovate for Change” placing innovation efforts by women and girls at the heart of all efforts that are channelled to achieve gender equality.
ZHRC says over the years, women have proved that they are capable in economic, social and political spheres of life and their efforts have made the world a better place to live, but in Zimbabwe, they have faced a host of challenges that undermined their ability to shine.
“The lived experiences of many women in Zimbabwe have limited their ability to be equal with men for them to excel in all spheres of life. Women and girls suffer disproportionately as existing inequalities are exacerbated by deterioration of current economic environment and acute poverty,” said ZHRC in a statement today.
ZHRC added that these challenges have reduced the potential of women to meaningfully contribute to development of the nation on an equal basis with their male counterparts. “Women continue to experience inequalities including limited opportunities in accessing services, violation of their basic human rights such as the right to food and water as well as the right to health care which accords them value and dignity,” said ZHRC.
Meanwhile, the ZHRC said it welcomes recent calls by President Emmerson Mnangagwa expressing his commitment to continue working towards full equality and further empowerment of girls and women in Zimbabwe.
Adding that the country has already set the tone for realisation of equality and gender balance through the Constitution and commitment to show political will by the leadership.
However, MDC-Alliance President Nelson Chamisa says the current ZANU PF government’s commitment to women’s rights is very questionable.
In his message marking Women’s Day today, Chamisa said his new Zimbabwe will end all gender-motivated crimes and other forms of discrimination against women, currently being witnessed under President Mnangagwa.
“Today I salute and honour all women around the world. The cause for gender equality anywhere is for human rights everywhere. In Zimbabwe, horrific crimes against women, including rape are common. Our New Zimbabwe will end the impunity behind these gender atrocities,” said Chamisa.
Be that as it may, Section 56 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, as well as other regional and international treaties that Zimbabwe is signatory to have guarantee gender equality and non-discrimination of women before the law.
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