WOMEN from rural areas across Zimbabwe have been urged to unite and support each other against male chauvinism in national politics.
These sentiments were said by Virginia Muwanigwa, chief executive of the Zimbabwe Gender Commission at a women’s summit to commemorate 16 Days Against Gender-Based Violence.
Muwanigwa said many women in Zimbabwe usually paid no attention to female political candidates, opting for male candidates hence the need to unite against what she called the ill-treatment of women.
“Majority of women do not like to see their fellow women at the top, and we tend not to trust them and this is the main reason the principle of gender equality has been facing a lot of challenges,” Muwanigwa said.
“Many women do not support each other and would rather not re-elect a female candidate twice.
“They start to blame their female colleagues for being in political position for much too long. But when a male candidate seeks re-election, we support them,” Muwanigwa added.
She further said it was unfortunate that women were not aware that only themselves are supposed to push strongly for their rights and emancipation in Parliament.
“Do you know that sanitary pads and maternity issues were pushed by women currently in Parliament as well as other issues to do with women.
“Yet you do not want to vote them into office,”
She also said unity among women was not only important in politics but also among families and communities.
“If women spoke with one voice, the issue of gender-based violence and child marriages would have been a thing of the past,” Muwanigwa added.