AAG launches Women’s Desk in Mash West
Walter Nyamukondiwa Chinhoyi Bureau
THE Affirmative Action Group’s Women Desk has been launched in Mashonaland West province as a deliberate move to advance the involvement of women in the mainstream economy.
Officially launching the desk, Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister Prisca Mupfumira said sustainable development could not be achieved if it left out the marginalised in society. These, she said, lacked access to resources and information to transform their lives.
“This event demonstrates serious commitment to the fight against poverty, exclusion and the marginalisation of women and indeed to ensure that opportunities for the empowerment of women are expanded,” she said.
“Affirmative action is a critical tool in creating socio-economic opportunities for women. It is pleasing to note that the women’s desk will now actively spearhead the drive for the inclusion of women into the mainstream economy on a bottom-up approach.”
She said there are vast opportunities in the province, particularly in mining and agriculture, which need to be exploited. Women, she said, should take advantage of Zim-Asset to set up hubs for value addition and beneficiation in the province. AAG founding president Dr Philip Chiyangwa said Government programmes have to be fully embraced.
“You need to have a clear political agenda, a strong understanding of the country’s history and provisions of the law,” said Dr Chiyangwa. “We do everything on the basis of the law and if you look at the land reform, it had to be legislated. President Mugabe’s move on land was a master stroke, which will live forever and ever.”
Women’s Desk chairperson Ms Pauline Chiripanyanga said the desk seeks to establish viable projects through partnerships to fight poverty. It also seeks to impart financial skills to women and help them understand and access markets. Ms Chiripanyanga said the Women’s Desk represented a new beginning and access to opportunities for women in the province. Already, 20 women are expected to benefit through a horticulture project on a piece of land provided by Mutorashanga school.