The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) has called upon the government of Zimbabwe to ensure that women are equipped with the necessary digital skills as a majority of them lag behind especially in marginalized communities.
Speaking prior to the belated commemoration of International Women’s Day set for March 11 (country wide for ZCTU), ZCTU president Florence Taruvinga said it is the duty of government to empower its citizenry especially women.
“This year’s theme (DigitALL- innovation and technology for gender equality) is relevant to Zimbabwean situation as we have more women in informal, rural communities, domestic, agriculture and or even mothers at home who are involved in care work but with no access to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and are thus lagging behind.
“The world has gone digital and it is critical for Zimbabwe to empower its citizens,” said Taruvinga.
She went on to say government should join the band wagon to ensure equal access to ICT for both men and women and thus protecting the rights of the latter in working spaces.
“The global theme for 2023 seeks to remind governments, organizations and the global society at large to ensure equal access to ICT skills for women and men as well as protecting and enforcing the rights of working women in digital spaces.
“Zimbabwe has a law that speaks to Cyber and Data Protection Act and this is good but needs enforcement while at the same time the Act should ensure protection of rights of workers in digital spaces especially the marginalized women,” added Taruvinga.
She however took a swipe at government of Zimbabwe for failing to effectively implement laws that safeguard the rights of women.
“Zimbabwe has women’s rights in the constitution, has a Ministry of Women Affairs and Gender Commission to deal with ensuring gender equality and women empowerment. While there have been attempts to accommodate the 60 seats for women in Parliament and good laws that protect women, Zimbabwe is still lacking in enforcement of those rights.
“Women face discrimination, resistance in occupying positions of authority and Gender Based Violence,” she added.
ZCTU this year came up with own theme- ‘A year of Action: building a more equal and inclusive digital society’.
International Women’s Day is an annual commemoration slated for March 8 while the whole of March has been declared women’s month.