The Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) says 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, in a press statement on International Women’s Day 2019.
The world, today, celebrates the International Women’s Day under the theme “Think Equal, Build Smart, Innovate for Change”.
“Women and girls suffer disproportionately as existing inequalities are exacerbated by deterioration of current economic environment and acute poverty,” ZHRC says. “This has drawn back the potential of women to meaningfully contribute to development 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.”
The Human Rights Commission says there is need to avail financial support, skills development and the appointment of women to critical positions of influence among other measures in order for the country to benefit from the full potential of women as equals in development.
The Commission also calls on the state to expedite the alignment of legislation such as the Children’s Amendment Bill and the Marriage Amendment Bill to the Constitution in order to adequately protect women and girls.
“All stakeholders should collaborate in efforts towards empowering women in all spheres of life in order to realise the desired change,” ZHRC says.
“The harmonisation of all these efforts will lead to gender equality and the full empowerment of women and girls in line with sustainable development goal number 5 on gender equality.”
The Commission, however, says it is encouraged by the recent commitment by President to continue working towards full equality and further empowerment of girls and women in Zimbabwe.
“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.”