Sifelani Tsiko Agric, Environment & Innovations Editor
UN Women has commended the Government for implementing a gender-responsive budget for the 2022 period saying this will help eradicate gender inequalities and create a society where everyone has access to equal rights, opportunities and services.
“The recent release of the National Gender Budget Statement for 2022 is a significant milestone and a welcome development in Zimbabwe’s journey towards entrenching Gender-Responsive Budgeting (GRB), which began in 2007,” Delphine Serumaga, UN Women country representative told the Herald yesterday.
She said the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) in Zimbabwe applauds the Government, in particular, the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development and Ministry of Women Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development on this milestone which will contribute to the country’s achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, in particular SDG 5, and NDS1 gender goals.
“UN Women views the 2022 Gender Budget Statement as a clear commitment to financing gender equality and women empowerment, and a strong example of the institutionalisation of GRB,” Serumaga said.
The statement provides a summary of Gender Sensitive Expenditures, Equal Opportunity Expenditures, Gender-Specific Expenditures, Economic Empowerment Expenditures and includes a breakdown of gender expenditures in the key sectors of education, agriculture, and social welfare.
It also outlines several new fiscal policy measures to be introduced to benefit women and disadvantaged groups.
The Statement provides a strong accountability tool for monitoring policy reform and it provides a lobbying and advocacy platform for higher financial investments in gender equality and women’s empowerment.
“It is a significant step in elevating financing for gender equality to the national economic agenda and pivots the country on a new trajectory for achieving SDGs and NDS1 priorities,” Serumaga said.
The move, she said, to clearly articulate the government’s gender financing commitments in the Statement enabled Zimbabwe to further implement the gender-responsive budgeting principles anchored within the international and regional gender equality commitments such as the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), the 1995 Beijing Platform of Action, the SADC Gender Protocol and in the 2030 SDGs Agenda, among others.
“UN Women in Zimbabwe shall continue to support GRB in partnership with the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development,” the UN Women country rep said.
“The overall goal of this partnership is to foster the institutionalisation of GRB, strengthen the policy space, and address the technical constraints to securing financing for gender equality.”