WRN petitions Parliament over 30% women’s quota

WRN petitions Parliament over 30% women’s quota
WRN petitions Parliament over 30% women’s quota

WRN petitions Parliament over 30% women’s quota

Women’s Reform Network, a coalition of 25 women’s rights organisations has petitioned Parliament to block Minister July Moyo’s intentions to create proportional representation seats in local authorities.

There are about 1958 local government wards in the country and the minister intends to add about 30% more seats outside the current wards for women.

The seats will be through proportional representation.

However, WRN in its petition want the 30% to be drawn from the current seats and not added outside.

WRN said creating seats outside the current wards will burden the taxpayers. The organisation also contends that the 30% is also not in line with the 50-50 constitutional provision.

‘’As Women’s Reform Network, we appreciate the need for interventions to increase women’s representation in elected and appointed leadership at all levels.

‘’However, we believe that any intervention must firstly be informed by the constitutional provisions of Section 17, 56 and 80 which expressly envisages and demand a legal framework which implements 50-50 gender equality at all levels in Zimbabwe.

‘’In addition, it is our considered view that any quotas must be allocated within the existing number of seats. Women empowerment in leadership must not create a burden on the taxpayers whose net effect would affect the adequacy and accessibility of quality gender-responsive service delivery which would in turn adversely impact the very same women who must be empowered.

‘’It is against this background that as the Women’s Reform Network we respectfully differ with the Honourable Minister,’’ read part of the petition.

The organisation wants Parliament to insist on a comprehensive review of the legal framework as it relates to attaining 50-50 gender equality in elected and appointed representation.

Women’ Reform Network say ‘’this is important because the constitution demands it in Section 17, 56 and 80, and the Minister of local government and public works must adhere to the constitution and Parliament must exercise oversight over his proclamations so that they do not violate the constitution which he swore to uphold.

‘’If the government insists on implementing the proposal of 30% women’s proportional representation quota in local authorities, the 587 seats should be within the already existing 1958.

‘’The WRN stands ready to assist the government with models for implementing the quota within,’’ said the petition.

WRN petitions Parliament over 30% women’s quota

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