WALPE Activity Update 03

Women reject the Private Voluntary (PVO) Bill

The WALPE observed the public hearings on the Private Voluntary Organizations (PVO) Bill in the country’s ten provinces from 28 February to 04 March 2022. The public consultations on the PVO Bill were being spearheaded by the Parliamentary portfolio committee on Labour, Public Service and Social Welfare. The Bill in its current form aims to restrict the work of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs).

The WALPE teams were on the ground monitoring the process in Harare, Guruve, Zhombe, Mutoko, Beitbridge, Kariba, Tsholotsho, Lupane, Gwanda, Masvingo, Rusape, Bulawayo, Gutu and Chinhoyi. Most of the participants made contributions against passing of the Bill highlighting the drastic effects this would have on their socio-economic and political life. It is sad that some of the hearings were marred by violence and disruptions and has to be adjourned prematurely. These include the ones held in Highfields- Harare, Rusape, Gutu and Bulawayo. It looked like there were people coordinated to disrupt the hearings and block people from raising their objections on the content of the Bill.

TV program highlights what needs to be done to push for women participation in elections

Members of the Women Reform Network (WRN), an electoral reform platform that WALPE coordinates converged on BUSTOP TV for a discussion on “What can be done by the government and political parties to push for the full participation of women in electoral processes as we move closer to the election”. The programme was supported by  the National Democratic Institute (NDI) and brought together 35 women members of 10 women’s rights organizations with an interest in elections. The participants shared what they are doing through their organizations in various constituencies that they operate in preparation for the by-election and the national elections scheduled for 2023.

March 26, by-elections: Are female candidates ready?

As the countdown to the March 26, 2022 by-elections begins, the Women Reform Network (WRN) held a talk-show with three female candidates from the ZANU PF, MDC Alliance and Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) political parties on 25 February 2022.

The talk-show was hosted by ZTN TV with support from National Democratic Institute (NDI) and laid bare some of the challenges women candidates are facing in the run up to the by-election. Some of the issues raised include: i) lack of funds to run meaningful campaigns, ii) political violence, iii) name calling, iv) being labelled radical feminists, v) limited access to media and vi) subjected to bullying on various social media platforms.

Read the full update here (1MB PDF)

Source: WALPE

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