• Reply to: Blaming Rape on Dressing: A mere scapegoat and persistent myth to justify deviant behaviour

    Growing up in a society where women were in some instances mistreated in the name of cultural norms and beliefs, l appreciate the impact of adverse cultural practises. Even in the present day where most people embrace or at least recognise the existence of equal rights, patriarchy has taken new forms. Clothing or how one is dressed has been used as a justification for sexual violence, a scapegoat and stubborn myth that perpetrators turn to as an excuse for their heinous acts.

    An interesting piece! I am a PhD candidate in a Peacebuilding Programme at Durban University of Technology and my research is about the social construction of gender. I would like to interview you as part of my data collection. Please whtsapp your contacts to 0773848706 and we take it from there.

    tony
  • Reply to: Young women learn to embrace leadership concepts through The Art of Hosting

    RAU in partnership with Kufunda Village held two participatory workshops on the Art of Hosting with young women leaders in Harare and Bulawayo.
    The young women drawn from Kadoma, Bindura, Gwanda and Bulawayo had conversational workshops in an environment where they had equal chances to express their opinions using the Art of Hosting approach.

    Good day im interested in sessions like the one above. Please may advise when you next do another one. My email is prisgee@gmail.com and contact numbers 0772923018 or 0718923018

    tony
  • Reply to: Weighing in on Devolution

    There has been debate in the current constitution making process on whether to adopt devolution of power as part of our governance system. It is alleged that some quotas in the Inclusive Government, for reasons known to themselves, have been misrepresenting the findings from the public consultative process. Newspaper reports in the past few months indicated that ZANU PF had the issue debated at one of its Politburo meetings and issued a statement that this system of government will not be a feature in the new constitution as it viewed it as divisive. Devolution is a system of government where local communities are mandated to ensure that they raise resources from their communities to develop their areas and decisions are not necessarily imposed by central government. The running of local councils in Zimbabwe comes close to it except that the minister of local government, Ignatius Chombo has interfered in the running of councils by appointing one Commission after another for reasons that are largely political, but that is a piece for another day. If the findings of the outreach exercise point to the fact that devolution was given thumbs up, the implications would be very serious. The people’s views are influenced by experiences of post -independent Zimbabwe where resource allocation has been questionable, favouring one clique or biased against a certain region. It might not be intentional, but the perception in politics is all that matters for shaping people’s views. It is believed that many state-of-the-art health facilities are found in Mashonaland West and that they have some of the best trained medical personnel including expatriate doctors. Then compared with areas such as Chipinge, the disparities are so glaring that they raise questions. How does one justify the setting up of a diamond polishing company in Mashonaland West Province, yet diamonds are mined in Marange which is in Manicaland? Or, perhaps the most controversial one, justifying the lack of seriousness on the part of central government to complete the Matebeleland Zambezi Water Project.

     

    In such circumstances who would blame the people of Matebeleland for saying the region is marginalized and therefore there is need to devolve power so they can manage their own affairs. The problem with the caliber of politicians we have is that when the issue of devolution is raised, there is suspicion and perhaps a feeling of guilt that comes up. Whereas the inclusion of the voices of different ethnic or tribal groups should be celebrated as a resource in building democracy, in Zimbabwe, the mere mention of the different ethnicities is perceived as an attempt to divide the country. The Ndebeles, the Ndaus, the Karangas, the Kalangas, Tongas,  and others are resources for nation building and have a right to take part in determining the course of the country and adding their voices to that process. It becomes a problem to think that the call for devolution of power is associated with attempts to divide the country, only because some people are guilty of such atrocious acts such as Gukurahundi committed in the 80s. The role of central government is to ensure that regions are allocated sufficient resources to equally develop and not to favour any specific regions because the people in higher offices are from certain ethnic groups. Diamonds in Marange surely should play a big part in developing Manicaland province, as much as granite extraction must benefit the people of Mashonaland East. Equally important, people of Matebeleland deserve a reliable supply of water. Let us celebrate the resources we have to develop our country including all Zimbabweans regardless of ethnicity and race.

    Good article

    admin
  • Reply to: Zim's New Cabinet: An Open Letter to Mr R.G Mugabe

    by Kudakwashe Chitsike

    Dear Mr President,

    I read with concern an article in one of the newspapers, which reported that you defended your decision to appoint only three women to Cabinet by saying that Zimbabwean women are uneducated and do not have the intellectual capacity to take up office. The newspaper quoted you directly as having said the following: “Give us the women. This time we did proportional representation; there were just not enough women. Women are few in universities.” Is this really true, Mr President? I have always regarded you as a progressive man, and I am having a hard time believing that these were your words. Perhaps the media misunderstood you, or just deliberately misconstrued your statement. The private media is very mischievous, isn’t it?

    You have been the president, and therefore boss of this country for more than 30 years, overseeing everything that happens in your government. How is it possible that 52% of your population is still not educated enough to take Cabinet posts? There are other important things I could raise, that seem to have also escaped your attention, but that is a letter I will write on another day. I hope that now that you have noticed this challenge, you are going to do something over the next five years to turn around the education system and ensure that there will be more women in the next Cabinet. Such a positive outcome is something we would look forward to in 2018!  Image

    I am a product of the education system that you inherited from the British when you took over the reigns in 1980. Kudos to you for maintaining the system for years, you really did your best. I stand proudly as a Zimbabwean wherever I go because I know I can hold my own in my chosen field, thanks to this system. Most Zimbabwean women in my circles are educated, holders of Masters degrees and even PhDs. Is this still not good enough for the Cabinet? Zimbabweans are finding jobs all over the world because they are well educated. A few months ago, you rightly pointed out that Zimbabweans are running the South African economy. A good number of Zimbabweans working in illustrious jobs in that country are women. If they are good enough to be scooped up by vibrant economies, why not our Cabinet?

    The University of Zimbabwe - the oldest higher learning institution in this country - is churning out more women than men and has been for quite some time. None from there were suitable? We as Zimbabweans have always prided ourselves in our education, this year we were rated as having a literacy rate of more than 90%. Unfortunately this percent was not gender disaggregated. Had it been, then that would have been something I would draw your attention to.

    Could it be that, Mr President, you meant to say that women in your party are the uneducated ones, since you were only looking within the party for these posts? If that is the case, then I understand. You were clearly stuck between a rock and a hard place. Your desire must have been to have a number of competent women in the Cabinet not only to adhere to the SADC Protocol on Gender and Development ratified by the 7th Parliament in October 2009, but also so that Zimbabwe achieves the gender equality enshrined in our constitution. I understand if you say that in your party, there were just not enough competent female candidates. What could you do but select the best of the lot? You only managed to find 3.

    Isn’t it also interesting that the issue of quality and level of education arises only when it comes to filling certain positions with women? What about the qualities and qualifications of the men in your Cabinet? Did they all go to university? What kind of men are they? What exactly was your selection criterion for Cabinet? It took you more than 40 days to come up with the list, so I assume it must have been a rigorous exercise. Were the candidates selected because of their qualities, or on the basis of them being loyal to you and/or the party? One of these days I will sit and go through each of their profiles, maybe the answers will come from there.

    I look forward to your response Mr President.

    Yours faithfully,

    Concerned Citizen

    This post is good enough to make somebody understand this amazing thing, and I’m sure everyone will appreciate this interesting things.

    admin