Victoria Falls (New Ziana)-President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Thursday bemoaned the absence of women in local government structures particularly council saying concerted effort must be made to address the anomaly.
Addressing the inaugural Women Councillors Indaba, President Mnangagwa said there was need to increase the participation of women in local authorities.
“It is however disheartening that there has been a reduction in the number of women councillors over the recent years. Deliberate efforts must be made to reverse this worrying trend.
“The need to widen democratic space and increase the participation of women in decision making processes cannot be over-emphasized,” he said.
President Mnangagwa said government stood ready to consider proposals towards the inclusion of more women in leadership positions.
“Recognising that the first past-the post electoral system has unfortunately led to less women in Parliament and within local authorities, my government stands ready to consider other options and proposals that will see the inclusion of more women in decision making bodies,” he said.
He urged women leaders to reflect on the factors that militate against the involvement and advancement of women in decision making.
“Women and girls bear the brunt of poor service delivery by our local authorities. The need for increased participation of women in the delivery of these services through actively participating in decision making at all levels is therefore indisputable,” said the President.
President Mnangagwa urged women to plug corruption holes in local governance systems.
“While the fight against corruption is everyone’s responsibility, as women you have the greatest potential to close all loopholes to the deleterious corruption vice by being the guarantors of responsive, transparent and accountable public systems,” he said.