CHIEF Dingani of Matabeleland North province has bemoaned the exclusion of women in chieftaincy, saying this discriminates against females.
By Nokuthaba Dlamini
Speaking during a farewell service for former Matabeleland North governor, Thokozile Mathuthu at Hwange Colliery Stadium on Thursday, Dingani said the country’s traditional system was too patriarchal and needs to be transformed to embrace more women.
“Men, allow women to take part in communities. Why do you oppress them and hinder them from achieving their goals? Women in our societies cannot dream and aspire because the moment they try to follow their passion, we oppose them,” Chief Dingani said.
He said Mathuthu was one woman who defied the odds.
“It was because her husband was not greedy and selfish. This is an issue that even us as traditional leaders have been failing to uphold and we seriously need some intervention,” the traditional leader said.
“Women are not allowed to be chiefs, even if they deserve it. We have tried to address this. Our communities will be better if we have female leaders taking part, but we say who is she to lead men? Let us embrace these women because even in politics, for one to win an election, a woman would’ve voted and they are the same women who take care of us and our children in our homes. Let us not oppress them and allow them to find themselves and what they like to do in their communities.”
Fati Nkomo, founder of Good Hope Mothers Orphanage, said Mathuthu always donated handouts to the 600 orphans at the institution.
Mathuthu, who died on Monday after succumbing to cancer, will be laid to rest tomorrow at the National Heroes’ Acre in Harare.