Thursday, July 18, 2024

Zimbabwe: NGO Demands Authorities to Respect Women's Right to Participate in Elections

WOMEN and Law in Southern Africa (WLSA) Zimbabwe has urged government to respect women’s right to actively participate in elections by creating an enabling environment

This comes as the nation heads towards 2023 elections and no single woman is vying for the Presidential seat.

The two prospective women Presidential candidates Linda Masarira, Labour Economists and African Democrats (LEAD) leader and Elisabeth Valerio of the United Zimbabwe Alliance (UZA) were disqualified after they failed to pay the required US$20 000 for nomination.

In a statement Tuesday, the women’s group pleaded with the government to honour women and establish a safe empowering environment.

“WLSA Zimbabwe urgently calls upon the government to respect the right of women to participate in elections as both candidates and voters as enshrined in the Constitution Section 67 Sub Section 2 (c) and Subsection 3.

“To create a safe and enabling environment for women to participate in electoral processes. Fully implement the 50/50 provision of gender equality as enshrined in the Constitution under Section 56

“Women and Law in Southern Africa urges the Government of Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, Ministry of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs. Zimbabwe Gender Commission and key stakeholders to take action to advance women’s rights in electoral processes,” the statement reads.

WLSA also said the nomination fees were exorbitant and arbitrary to such an extent that they constituted a violation of the political rights protected under section 67 of the Constitution and the right to equality and non-discrimination protected under section 56 of the Constitution and women candidates among other were unfairly prejudiced.

“This decision is a setback for women’s rights in politics and decision-making, as exorbitant nomination fees unfairly restrict women’s access to political participation and representation,” WLSA added.


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