Senate President Cde Marble Chinomona is leading a Zimbabwe delegation to the 65th Session of the United Nations body, Commission on the Status of Women, being held virtually to reflect on initiative efforts that have been made by member states to empower women.
Zimbabwe is expected to showcase the several efforts that it has taken which include a Constitution provision that reserves 60 seats for women in Parliament. Other legislators that are attending the conference that will run until March 26 include Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, Parliamentary Women caucus Cde Goodluck Kwaramba, her deputy Mrs Sibusisiwe Bhudha-Masara among others.
The Theme of the conference is “Women’s full and effective participation and decision-making in public life, as well as the elimination of violence, for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls”.
In an interview at the weekend Cde Kwaramba said Zimbabwe had a positive story to tell given various initiative efforts that it has taken aimed at empowering women.
“We have several women in leadership positions. The Government has a Constitutional provision that earmarks 60 women in the National Assembly. The provision that ran for 10 years is coming to an end in 2023 and we are pushing to have the provision extended,” said Cde Kwaramba.
She however said there are other countries such as Rwanda that Zimbabwe ought to emulate which has surpassed the 50-50 gender equality in leadership positions.
“Zimbabwe stands at around 34 percent women in leadership positions and we feel more can still be done to get to what countries like Rwanda has done,” said Cde Kwaramba.
Ms Bhudha-Masara said the conference will also focus on issues like gender based violence, and child marriage among other issues that affect women.
Other issues that will come up for deliberation is the impact that Covid-19 has had on people, particularly women.
During the conference, there will be over 100 virtual interactive side events hosted by Member States, Intergovernmental Organisations and UN Entities, often in collaboration with civil society.
The conference was officially opened early this week by president of the United Nations General Assembly, Mr Volkan Bozkir.
He commended the delegations, civil society representatives, and UN Women, for their tireless work in lobbying for gender equality.
He said he had since established as Advisory Group on Gender Equality, — including more than 50 women who serve in New York as Permanent Representative to the United Nations — in order to mainstream gender equality throughout the work of the General Assembly.