Back to Index
This article participates on the following special index pages:
Index of articles surrounding the debate of the Domestic Violence Bill
Women's Day and the Domestic Violence Bill
March 11, 2006
the index of articles on the debate around the Domestic Violence
Day (IWD) is celebrated worldwide and on this day when women claim
their rights as equal citizens in their countries. The theme for IWD
this year is, "women in decision making".
Gender based violence deters women from participating in decisions
that affect their lives community and country. Violence and discrimination
hinders women’s participation in politics where the electorate mostly
prefers men for leadership positions.
The Women’s Coalition commemorates
16 Days this year with a request to policy makers to pass the Domestic
Violence Bill and protect women and girls from violence in the
home. The idea of the Domestic Violence Bill was conceived in 1999
after research and observations showed that women were suffering
gruesome violence at the hands of their partners. Research also
showed that in 95% of the cases of domestic violence women are the
victims. In the era of HIV/AIDS some women are deliberately infected
by their partners and this is sexual violence.
justice legal system for women suffering gender based violence was
and is still a nightmare. The legal system is insensitive because
there are no specific provisions that deal with domestic violence.
The police force which is male dominated also perceives of domestic
violence as a private matter which they are ill equipped to deal
with. Musasa Project, a women rights NGO, consulted with stakeholders,
influenced the drafting of the bill and has lobbied, advocated and
petitioned for the passing of the Domestic Violence Bill.
Coalition and its membership also contributed a lot to the campaign
to popularize the bill over the past six years. When all seemed
to be lost and after five years of lobbying and advocating for the
passing of the bill, a miracle came with the resurrection of the
Ministry of Women’s Affairs. Honourable Minister Oppah Muchinguri
immediately started advocating and pushing for the bill. Policy
makers have been roped in and there seems to be no obstacle to the
passing of the bill now.
Coalition of Zimbabwe is one of the stakeholders pulling all stops
to ensure they engage in a massive campaign as a countdown to the
tabling of the Domestic Violence Bill. This will start during the
International Women’s Day and continue until the bill is tabled,
debated and passed. This is necessary to get the policy makers,
women and men to appreciate the importance of this piece of legislation.
The Campaign will involve raising public awareness on the
need of the bill and its contents by;
There are many
other challenges to the attainment of women’s human rights in Zimbabwe
and one of these is the discrimination inherent in the constitution
of Zimbabwe. Section 23 of the constitution still discriminates women
based on their sex and women of Zimbabwe should engage a massive campaign
for the repeal of the section. Equality of men and women is a human
right and it should be guaranteed in our constitution and laws of
Zimbabwe. Zimbabweans should unite and ensure women and girls in particular
and boys and men in general are protected from Gender Based Violence.
of thousands of signatures to plead with policy makers to prioritise
tents around Zimbabwe where people can come and leave their testimonies
of GBV and these will be publicized.
- Put up billboards
with messages that support passing of Gender Based Violence.
radio adverts and shows.
- TV talk shows
and adverts in the newspapers
of pamphlets and fliers in support of the bill.
- Holding workshops,
symposiums, meetings to raise awareness of the bill.
- Daily update
of events through the e-coalition.
Come and join
the women on the 11th of March 2006 at Chitungwiza Aquatic
Complex in Chitungwiza.
Visit the Women's
Please credit www.kubatana.net if you make use of material from this website.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License unless stated otherwise.