Impact of Gender Stereotypes on Women

WLSA Zimbabwe has just published a report on the Impact of Gender Stereotypes on Women’s Full Political Participation. Among other things the report highlights that despite Constitutional provisions in Sections 17, 56 and 80 clearly outlining gender equality only 13,3% of councillors, 48 % of senators were women, and 31,5% of the National Assembly seats (plus PR quota) were occupied by women in the 2018 Harmonised elections. Read on!

Despite the progressive legal provisions outlined above, women in Zimbabwe continue to face discrimination in politics on the basis of gender. Zimbabwe continues to lag behind on gender equality. Women in Zimbabwe constitute 52% of the total population and yet this numerical advantage has not been translated into the number of leadership positions occupied by women. From the 2018 election results, only 13.3% of the 1958 ward councillors were women, 48% of the senatorial seats were occupied by women and 31.5% of the 270 National Assembly seats were occupied by women.

These appalling figures that are not in sync with the national demographical data are an indictment on the country’s commitment to achieving gender equality and equity. Social and cultural practices rooted in patriarchy, low levels of education and limited financial muscle are some of the inhibiting factors that continue to stall progress on gender equality.

The Rationale

This research was therefore commissioned to further investigate the perennial problem of low levels of women participation in politics, with a particular focus on gender attitudes in society and how these influence participation of women. The research intends to inform public policy in Zimbabwe and to make recommendations to various stakeholders who include political parties, policy makers, traditional and religious leaders, independent commissions that support democracy and civil society organisations.

Read the full report here (3MB PDF)

Source: WLSA Zimbabwe


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