Story by ZBC Reporter
ZIMBABWE says it is not leaving anyone or any place behind in its bid to uplift the status of women in the country.
The 67th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW67) is underway in New York, with Zimbabwe represented by the Minister of Women Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development, Dr Sithembiso Nyoni and the Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Senator Monica Mutsvangwa.
Presenting the country’s position paper, Dr Nyoni noted the government’s strides towards bridging gender gaps in line with the CSW priority theme of using innovation and technology to empower women and girls.
Dr Nyoni noted, ‘‘The National Development Strategy 1, 2021 – 2025, prioritizes innovation, implementation and grounding Information and Communication Technology (ICTs) systems in both public and private sectors.
“The Government of Zimbabwe is increasing the internet coverage rate from 59.1% in 2020 to 75.4% by 2025. The mobile penetration rate is expected to increase from the current 94.2% to 100% by 2025. In 2021 the Government of Zimbabwe embarked on a project of setting up Community Information Centres (CIC’s) to enable hard-to-reach communities access to ICTs.
‘‘Currently, there are over 200 operational CICs countrywide offering training and free access to the communities, with over 40 expected to be commissioned in 2023. To enhance ICTs in education, Zimbabwe is providing schools with power supplies, solar panels, computing devices and internet connectivity targeting 2700 schools.
“To date, 1100 schools have benefitted from the project. Zimbabwe has established multi-purpose hubs for education and learning to include young women and girls, enabling them to participate in online learning including regional and international engagements.’’
Minister Nyoni also noted Zimbabwe’s efforts to ensure food security, leadership capacity building and financial inclusion of all women including those in rural communities in line with the review theme of the session.
Dr Nyoni added, ‘‘Regarding the review theme, Chairperson, the Government of Zimbabwe developed a financial inclusion strategy aimed at promoting women’s access to finance. It has further promoted savings and women’s economic empowerment projects through the establishment of the Women’s Bank.
“To promote women’s leadership, the Government of Zimbabwe introduced a quota system for women in parliament and local government seats. To this end, there has been deliberate capacity building and strengthening processes to promote women’s participation.’’
The 67th session of the Commission on the Status of Women kicked off on the 6th of this month and will run until the 17th.