Women Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Minister Monica Mutsvangwa says gender equality and establishing a conducive environment for women and girls are top priorities for the Second Republic as evidenced by initiatives being undertaken by Government,
Speaking at an event on the sidelines of the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) in Dubai, Minister Mutsvangwa said women empowerment is guaranteed under President Mnangagwa’s administration.
She said gender and climate change have a symbiotic relationship which Government is alive to.
“Our constitution in Zimbabwe upholds gender equality as one of its principles. Gender mainstreaming has been embedded in Government policy as a critical strategy for the promotion of gender equality and women empowerment across all sectors.
“The revised National Gender Policy has a pillar on gender and climate change to which gender sensitive programming and inclusivity must be fostered to attain inclusive sustainable development,” she said.
Minister Mutsvangwa said Zimbabwe is committed to cushioning vulnerable groups such as women and girls from the negative effects of climate change.
“The discourse on climate justice is echoing louder than ever. As we delve into conversations about mitigating the impacts of climate change, it is imperative that we integrate gender equality into our strategies for a sustainable future,” she said.
The National Development Strategy 1 mentioned gender and climate change as cross-cutting developmental issues which need to be mainstreamed across all sectors to build resilience of communities against the effects of climate change and to promote sustainable socio-economic growth.
“While climate change threatens livelihoods and human security across the board, the vulnerable groups including women and girls always face the greater risks and greater burdens from climate change,” Minister Mutsvangwa said.
The Second Republic, said Minister Mutsvangwa, is reaching out to women across all sectors right from grassroots level to see how best they can be assisted and thus empowered.
“Women and girls face the brunt of climate change. If we can empower our women and look at these issues, we are already in conversations with a lot of women: women in farming, women in mining, women in manufacturing, even the grassroots women …
“because my President’s mantra is don’t leave anyone behind or any place behind and as such we want to continue dialogue and make sure we change their lives,” she said.