THE Zimbabwe Human Rights Association (ZimRights) has lamented the absence of women’s voices in traditional courts arguing that the patriarchal set-up in Zimbabwean communities places women at a disadvantage when it comes to representation as they are given limited platforms to air their views.
In a statement, ZimRights condemned all forms of discrimination, encouraging the government and communities to prevent it as it impeded peace and development in the country.
“ZimRights is concerned with the missing voice of women in some traditional courts,” read the statement.
“Women are not given a platform to speak, but are represented by and have their male counterparts speak on their behalf.
“This form of discrimination must end and women should be given the opportunity to speak for themselves. No one should be discriminated against on the basis of gender/sex as it is essential for them to have space to discuss and find solutions to issues specific to them.”
The group blasted the unfair distribution of agricultural inputs in the Manicaland province, arguing the inputs belonged to the government and were to be granted to all citizens not considering their political preferences.
“Recent reports revealed partisan distribution of agricultural inputs in Mutasa district,” it said.
“The agricultural inputs are government inputs secured from proceeds of taxes paid by Zimbabweans regardless of their political affiliation.
“These inputs should be given to all citizens who are in need of them regardless of their political affliction.”
Discrimination is widespread in Zimbabwe and the Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development ministry has penned a Bill that when passed would provide for the establishment of a commission to promote gender equality, strengthen and institutionalise monitoring of gender issues across the society.
“The organisation emphasises that no citizen must be discriminated against on the basis of his/her political orientation, gender or religion. It is the duty of citizens and authority to work together to fight discrimination,” the statements said.