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newsletter – December 2013
Women in Politics
Support Unit (WIPSU)
December 06, 2013
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One of the important
roles of Parliamentarians is to pass relevant and new legislation.
They do this by debating in parliament and flagging the issues that
are relevant for their constituencies. This is what some of the
women in Parliament
have had to say in the last month;
members, our task is to debate and urgently amend the laws that
govern health care. While debating these issues, we should not forget
to support any measures that will be brought before us which are
aimed at improving the conditions of service for our health workers,
the civil service and our security forces.” Hon Thembani on
the Motion on the Presidential Speech.
“I want to specifically
mention the, White Gold, cotton prices that have been poorly priced
and the farmers have been left with nothing to take home. The majority
of those who suffer from this problem are women. The producer price
for cotton should be adjusted or else the people will be discouraged
from engaging in active and meaningful agriculture to boost the
economy. The new Government should put in place policies, which
address the issue of infrastructure rehabilitation. The access road
between Mhondoro – Mamina, Turf - Kadoma, Chakari and Sanyati
is bad. Kadoma – Sanyati road is very bad. Mr. Speaker Sir,
rehabilitation of these roads should be a priority.” Hon Sogorani
on the Motion on the Presidential Speech.
“Mr. Speaker Sir,
we all know the effects of power cuts; power cuts are mainly felt
by the women and young girls. I am trying to imagine what could
happen if a woman was in labour and there is a power cut in that
labour ward. I think we really need to take issues of energy seriously
because it affects women adversely.” Hon. Anastancia Ndhlovu
on the Motion on the Inquiry into the power sector in Zimbabwe.
When the issue
of equal representation in parliament is put on the table the debate
always shifts to discussions of quality versus quantity. The debate
being that men are able to better represent citizens in Parliament
and that even the women who are in parliament are not playing their
representative role. However, if we look at the statistics generated
by the Research
and Advocacy Unit (What
happened in Parliament? An analysis of the participation of
MPs 2012 to 2013), women speak in Parliament more than the men do.
In the 7th Parliament of Zimbabwe 15% of the men in Senate did not
speak at all compared to 10% of women. In the House of Assembly
only 20% of the women did not speak at all as compared to 26% of
When we look at the issues
that the women are raising in parliament, as highlighted above,
there are two things that are clear. Firstly women are and have
been raising issues in Parliament debates, more so than their male
counterparts. Secondly the issues that they are raising are gendered
in their nature while also raising pertinent issues that will affect,
and benefit all the citizens of Zimbabwe.
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