WOMEN in mining are experiencing a myriad of problems such as victimisation, dispossession of their claims by men, and gender based violence.
Representative of the sub-committee on Women in Mining in the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy, Fanny Chirisa told NewsDay yesterday that women in areas such as Gwanda and Shamva pleaded with MPs to put in place a legal framework to protect them.
BY VENERANDA LANGA
“Women in mining, particularly in the gold mining sector, are experiencing a number of challenges such as victimisation by male miners, dispossession of their claims, and various other forms of gender-based violence, resulting in many women fearing to venture into mining,” she said.
“After the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy visited Shamva and Gwanda to speak to the affected women, it was recommended that there is need to appoint a gender focal person to address the gender related issues in the mining sector.”
Chirisa said there was also need for the Mines ministry to set up a department that would specifically look at concerns of artisanal and small scale miners in the country.
She said it was imperative to have more women in mining so that they were economically-empowered as mining is one of the lucrative business ventures in the country.
“Government must invest more in women in mining and link them with strategic partners. There is also need to ensure mining laws resolve issues of gender discrepancies in the mining sector,” Chirisa said.
She said there was need for women to get mining education so that they can understand mapping, the mining environment, and quality control so that they improve the quality and quantity of their mined products.
“Women in mining must be able to come up with plans and proposals that would attract investors, as well as look for partnerships which would assist their businesses to grow into big mining projects,” Chirisa said.