EXPOSED: Zim Parliament has no policy on sexual harassment

EXPOSED: Zim Parliament has no policy on sexual harassment
EXPOSED: Zim Parliament has no policy on sexual harassment

Senator Prisca Mupfumira has expressed disappointment that the Parliament of Zimbabwe has no policy on issues of sexual harassment.

Mupfumira’s disappointment comes at a time when several female legislators have complained of sexual harassment perpetrated by male colleagues.

Legislators Jasmine Toffa, Joana Mamombe and Lynette Kore complained in the National Assembly about sexual harassment on several occasions.

Norton legislator Temba Mliswa also highlighted the issue accusing Honourable Tafanana Zhou of being the perpetrator.

Honourable Mliswa said sexual harassment was not being done to female legislators alone but also female Parliament staff.

Despite these complaints, the Parliament appears to have not moved an inch to try and deal with the complaints.

Speaking in the Senate on a debate on the implementation of the gender policy and Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) gender-sensitive tool kit, Honourable Mupfumira said it was disappointing that it has been three years since the call for the policy, but the Parliament of Zimbabwe has not actioned it.

“It is sad Mr President, that Parliament being one of the three arms of the State has no sexual harassment policy or even mechanisms in place to deal with these issues despite being a member of the IPU which has reiterated over the three years the need for Parliament to establish institutional mechanisms to address sexism and sexual harassment in their Parliament, to make reference to the report on the 63rd Session of the Commission on the Status of Women where the IPU held a session of all parliamentarians participating in the session on sexism and sexual harassment in Parliament.

MPs were challenged to put measures in places

‘’This report was tabled by the Chairperson of Zimbabwe Women’s Parliamentary Caucus, Honourable Goodluck Kwaramba.  Parliamentarians were challenged to put in place measures to address this matter.  The need for reporting mechanisms, investigations and disciplinary actions were part of the suggestion mechanisms.

‘’Research done by the IPU revealed that one in every three female Members of Parliament had been sexually harassed and the absence of such measures made these cases go unreported. 

‘’In the 56th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women whose theme was based on the participation of women in public life as an empowerment of women a call was made for Parliaments to make use of the Gender-Sensitive Parliaments Tool Kit developed by IPU in establishing institutional mechanisms to address sexual harassment of both Members of Parliament and staff. As a legislature, it is important that Parliament leads by example for the nation sooner than later,” she said.

EXPOSED: Zim Parliament has no policy on sexual harassment

EXPOSED: Zim Parliament has no policy on sexual harassment

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