People living with disabilities have demanded inclusion on the Zimbabwe Gender Commission (ZGC) which is expected to come into being soon.
BY VENERANDA LANGA
This came up during a public hearing at Mutare Civic Centre by two joint Parliamentary committees, the Thematic Committee on Gender Development and the Portfolio Committee on Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development chaired by Goromonzi West MP Biata Nyamupinga (Zanu PF) to gather public views on the Zimbabwe Gender Commission Bill.
Chairperson of the Thematic Committee on Gender and Development Chitungwiza Senator James Makore (MDC-T) said people living with disabilities in Mutare demanded that they should actually have representation in all commissions to be set up in the country.
“They stated quite clearly that in fact they must be represented in all commissions that will be set up in Zimbabwe so that their interests are catered for,” he said.
Makore said the committee would this week visit other cities such as Masvingo, Bulawayo, Gweru and Harare to gather views from the public on the Bill.
But the committee would not visit rural areas due to financial and other constraints.
Makore said in the event the Bill was passed in Parliament, it would operationalise the ZGC to be set up and ensure it would be funded by the fiscus.
If established, some of the functions of the ZGC will include monitoring gender equality and investigating possible violations of rights relating to gender and recommending changes to laws and practices which lead to gender discrimination.
The commission will also advise public and private institutions on steps to take to ensure gender equality, recommend criminal violations of rights relating to gender and others.
Interviews for the eight members of the commission were held last month. Some of the attributes that were required for the commissioners were knowledge and understanding of gender issues in social, cultural, economic and political spheres, and equal gender representation in the commissions.