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“Know your constitution,” women told

CONSTITUTIONAL awareness is key especially amongt women as a means to encourage transparency and justice of the coming elections, leaders of opposition political parties have said.

In a recent gender forum organised by Women’s Institute for Leadership Development, leaders of MDC, ZAPU and PDP urged women to fully understand the Charter and take note of it to ensure that it is that it is fully implemented so as to guarantee fair results in the coming polls.

MDC president, Professor Welshman Ncube said women must stand up for their rights instead of watching injustices being perpetrated against them.

“Matabeleland women need to stand up for their rights and see that the Constitution is fully implemented rather than saying the constitution is equal (50-50),” said Prof Ncube.

He said women are dominating Zimbabwean population yet there are few of them in Parliament.

“Men do not fully understand women needs and so they do not fully represent them in Parliament. Therefore women must partake in leadership so that they represent themselves and this can only be done if women support each other by voting for the female candidates,” said Ncube.

The People’s Democratic Party Secretary General Gorden Moyo said over past three years they have been working on coming together as parties to form an organisation (CODE) to eliminate the current situation and encouraged women to be part of it for the country’s development.

“We have come up with the Coalition of Democrats (CODE) which women need to be part of it as we want to fully implement the Constitution to easily deal with the collapsing economy which ZANU PF contributed the most,” said Moyo.

Moyo said parties that chase away women from leadership positions lack development and are breaching the terms of the Constitution.

“I was raised by a woman and most women have self-consciousness, they are afraid of engaging in corruption unlike men who have made corruption their daily norms.

“When l was driving into town l saw long queues at banks and women were dominating, so there is no way we can exclude them in leadership since they are the most affected than men,” said Moyo.

ZAPU leader Dr Dumiso Dabengwa said the right of women to equal representation is binding.

“In the Zimbabwean Cabinet they are only 3 women out of about 25 men and this is not what the constitution says , the 50- 50 is not there in actual fact,” said Dr Dabengwa.

In the National Assembly in 2008 elections, the number of female candidates who stood for elections dropped from 118 to 111, while the number of women who won dropped from 34 to 26.

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