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‘We won’t vote for fellow women’

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Young women in Bulawayo say they will not vote for their elderly colleagues whom they accuse of not doing much to uplift women and reluctance “to pass on the baton stick”.

Speaking at the National Youth Development Trust-organised conference in Bulawayo on Thursday, one participant took a swipe at the current crop of female leaders saying they would not vote for “these old women who are already in power because they do not want to pass on the baton stick”.

“What we have only done is to ululate and celebrate their victory when they are leaders, but they do not do anything for women to be equal with men,” said one participant.

Cleopatra Ndlovu, an academic, said women’s leagues in political parties had become arenas where women turn against each other.

“All the parties in Zimbabwe have put in place wings for women and the youth, but men have remained in the main wings of the parties.

“The wings have become spaces where women are turning against each other and end up being a fragmented unit instead of being united and engaging on issues that will gain them more clout within the party. The wings have disempowered women.”

“Politics is usually misunderstood to refer to the activities of politicians, parties, parliament and government. Most women generally participate in politics in non-conventional ways.

“They are more engaged in social movements and non–governmental organisations than in governments or women’s organisations than in governments, parliaments or social parties,” said Moreblessings Ncube, a lecturer at Lupane State University.”

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