Women Urged To Throng Voter Registration Centres
HARARE – Zimbabwe Election Support Network (Zesn) director Rindai Chipfunde Vava has urged local women to go out in their numbers and register as voters when the process begins soon.
Vava said this was in line with the 2017 International Women's Day theme, "Be Bold for Change".
She was however quick to say the environment should be conducive for women to participate fully in the country’s electoral processes.
“In addition, the Network reiterates its calls for zero tolerance towards politically motivated violence and for the creation of a conducive political environment that encourages women’s participation in electoral processes,” Vava said in a statement.
"In a research conducted by ZESN on challenges in attaining gender balance in Zimbabwe, most women mentioned fear of physical and sexual violence and victimisation particularly during elections as an impediment to their participation in the electoral process.”
Despite the gains ushered by the new constitution on increased representation of women in parliament, from 18% to 35%, through the proportional representative system, fear, lack of financial support have been identified as impeding women from full participation.
Independent Norton legislator Temba Mliswa has urged local women before to demonstrate their disapproval for electoral intimidation through voting in numbers.
While violence and intimidation have become a culture during the country’s electoral period, Zanu PF opponents say there has been little to no action taken by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) or the police to bring culprits to book.