As we commemorate International Women’s Day running under the theme, “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow” and hashtag #BreakTheBias, the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) implores all stakeholders to continue exploring opportunities, impediments and empower women to effectively participate in democratic electoral processes. International Women’s Day is celebrated every year on March 8 to mark and celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women and raise awareness about women’s equality and accelerate gender parity.
The Network takes cognizance of the existing biases and stereotypes against women in leadership and elections which have impacted negatively on their participation in elections as contestants or candidates in local authority and National Assembly including the Presidium.
“Without gender equality today, a sustainable future, and an equal future remains beyond our reach, hence the need for a multi-stakeholder approach to break the biases that exist against women; such as, “men make better political leaders and that the woman’s place is in the household,” said ZESN Chair Mr Andrew Makoni.
ZESN notes that more needs t0 be done to ensure diversity and a world free of stereotypes and gender discrimination; political parties should put in place mechanisms that promote gender equality and equity. Furthermore, the Network urges women to challenge barriers that affect them and report violations on their rights; to have a voice and be equal players in decision-making as a key tenet for sustainable development and gender equality.