The Government has commended the Zambia Council for Social Development (ZCSD) for embarking on activities aimed at promoting women and youth participation in governance and elections in the country.
And Minister of Gender, Elizabeth Phiri, notes that the ZCSD activities complement government’s vision of not leaving anyone behind in the implementation of government’s programs through promotion of equal participation especially in political leadership.
ZANIS reports that Ms Phiri was speaking in Lusaka today, during the official launch of the project dubbed ‘Promoting participation of women and youths in governance and elections in Zambia’ which is being implemented by ZCSD.
The Gender Minister said the initiative will go a long way in strengthening the tenancy of democracy and the rule of law for all Zambians to enjoy their rights to participate in the elections directly as candidates or indirectly through choosing leaders of their choice.
“The program reflects on the Patriotic Front (PF) Administration which seeks to encourage youths and women to utilize the opportunities of taking part in political leadership positions at various levels,” Ms Phiri stated.
Ms. Phiri who is also Kanyama constituency member of parliament, pointed out that it provides for equal opportunities by women and men to actively participate and contribute to national development in all spheres of life.
“As PF Administration, we recognize the need for gender equality, therefore, having an opportunity to share on how we can close the gap in political offices is something we are happy to be part of,” Mrs. Phiri stressed.
She has since urged the women and youths to rise to the opportunity and contest as enshrined in various protocols which Zambia is a signatory to.
And ZCSD Chairperson, Mahamba Chiputa, explained that the project was aimed at helping to increase support towards the participation of women and youths in the 2021 general elections.
“ Zambia being a signatory to various international and regional instruments, it is our role as civil societies to continue to remind the government of the commitment especially this year when the country is heading to the polls on August 12, 2021,” Mr Chiputa said.
“We recognise that increasing women and youth participation in politics is not the sole responsibility of the government, but rather requires a multi- sectoral approach by all civil societies, traditional leaders, political parties and the media at large,” Mr. Chiputa explained.
He added that traditional rulers are also key in helping to fight negative traditional practices that hinder women and young people from standing as candidates, hence calling on various stakeholders to promote positive voices of the minority.
He assured that the project will work with all women and youths regardless of their political, religious, ethnicity and any other consideration.