BY LORRAINE MUROMO
YOUNG people and women have been urged to participate in civic processes at local authority level to influence good governance.
This came out during a weekend conference held in Harare by the Self Help Development Foundation (SHDF), under the theme Citizen Participation: A Tool for Accountability and Development.
The discussion was meant to demystify patriarchy and how it hinders active participation of women in civic processes.
SHDF executive director Wadzanai Vhere said patriarchy was the main reason why women remained invisible in civic matters.
“Patriarchy as a system is not easily broken and in the African context it is reinforced in the institutions we live in, particularly the family. Our traditional structures reinforce patriarchy and it’s not a two-year process, but a life-time commitment and for the longest time patriarchy has continued to rear its head.”
Vhere said there was need to boost women’s confidence in their ability to lead in different transformational civic spaces.
“There should be an increased shift in women leadership and this should reflect even in national elections and it will be a barometer to show there is room and chance for women,” she said.
Lillian Zemura (Zanu PF Proportional Representation MP for Mashonaland East) urged women and youth to take a leading role in development and governance issues.
“Despite the limitations they face, women and youth have continued to be resolute in pushing for improved service delivery in their communities,” Zemura said.
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