Zimbabwe: 50/50 Yes we must

Zimbabwe: 50/50 Yes we must

Date: August 31, 2011
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The Zimbabwe Deputy Prime Minister Thokozani Khupe officially re-launched the 5050 campaign at a high profile event attended by over 300 women and men on 4 August 2011 at Crowne Plaza in Harare. Women in Politics Support Unit in its capacity as the Southern Africa Gender Protocol Alliance Gender and Governance cluster lead organisation in collaboration with Gender Links as the Alliance Secretariat hosted the event.

The recent performance by SADC Member States with regard to political decision-making has been inconsistent. For each step forward towards attaining the 50/50 women in decision-making target, there have been two steps backwards in a number of SADC countries. The net result of these ups and downs is that overall progress is slow at the very moment when it needs to be stepped up.

Time is limited. Countries holding elections in 2011 and 2012 have one last chance before the 2015 deadline. There is therefore a need to redouble advocacy efforts to ensure that all stakeholders especially political parties and governments put in place measures to guard gains already made and strive for attaining the fifty/fifty target.Zambia for example has already missed the mark this time around in the upcoming elections. For example the ruling party Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) has fielded only 19 out of 150 candidates according to a party list released in July 2011.

Among delegates at the re-launch were co-Minister of Home Affairs Theresa Makoni; Members of Parliament, councilors and senior party officials from both main parties Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANUPF) and Movement Democratic Change -T (MDCT); development partners; regional Southern Africa Gender Protocol Governance cluster members and local based civil society organisations.

Why re-launch the 5050 campaign
The campaign aims to bring to attention of the public and political parties, the need to increase women in public office. It advocates for the use of legal quotas to legislate ‘at least’ 50% participation of women in decision making structures and other strategies to achieve this goal.

Click here to view press release on the occasion of the re-launch in English, French and Portuguese
Click here to read more about why a 5050 campaign

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