The Zambia National Women’s Lobby (ZNWL) has hailed the courage shown by Ms Engiwe Mzyece – the only female candidate in the Kabwata Parliamentary by-election set for 3rd February, 2022.
ZNWL National Board Chairperson Daisy Nkhata Ng’ambi said the women’s movement is encouraged by UNIP candidate Ms. Mzyece’s consistency in her political career and desire to serve the people of Kabwata.
Ms. Ng’ambi has since called on voters in Kabwata Constituency to support Ms. Mzyece.
Ms. Mzyece is competing for the Kabwata Seat against UPND’s Andrew Tayengwa, PF’s Clement Tembo, Economic and Equity Party President Chilufya Tayali, Democratic Party’s Fred Mubanga and New Heritage Party’s Kennedy Muyoya.
The rest are PeP’s Henry Muleya, Socialist party’s Trevor Ng’andu and People’s Alliance for Change’s Sydney Zyambo.
Ms. Ng’ambi has also commended the United National Independence Party (UNIP) for adopting a woman in Kabwata.
“The Zambia National Women’s Lobby (ZNWL) would like to commend the United National Independence Party (UNIP) for adopting a woman, Ms. Engiwe Mzyece, to contest the 3February 2022 Kabwata parliamentary by-election, when the adoption of women as candidates in by-elections is becoming increasingly rare. ZNWL also commends Ms. Mzyece for her courage to contest in the parliamentary by- election being the only female candidate out of the 8 that are contesting. We are encouraged by Ms. Mzyece’s consistency in her political career and desire to serve the people of Kabwata, as she has continuously availed herself as a candidate in the past elections,” Ms. Ng’ambi stated.
She expressed ZNWL’s worry over the continued adoption of fewer women in elections.
“ZNWL is concerned that many qualified and committed women in political parties are being left out of adoptions in preference for male candidates. This has contributed to the reduction in the representation of women in leadership at local government and parliamentary level where statistics currently stand at 7.1% (local government and 13.4% parliamentary. This is way below the targets set by the SADC, African Union and United Nations which require 50% representation of women and men in decision making positions,” she said.
Ms. Ng’ambi said there is a need to reduce gender gaps regarding women in leadership.
“As an affiliate to these international bodies, Zambia should be seen making strides to reducing the gender gaps in decision making positions by promoting women’s participation in decision making positions, but unfortunately this has not been the case. ZNWL therefore implores all political parties to adopt affirmative measures that will make the adoption of women more attainable, and further ensure that women take-up leadership positions,” she observed.
“This will not only improve the political party’s performance but also help bridge the gender gap in leadership and decision-making positions. For the country to return on the path of increasing the number of women in leadership and ultimately reach the 50% gender representation in leadership target there must be demonstrated commitment from key stakeholders who include the Government and political parties,” Ms. Ng’ambi stated.
He added:”We urge the people of Kabwata Constituency to support the only female candidate that has availed herself during the by elections.”
Meanwhile, the Kabwata by-election was necessitated by the death of UPND’s Levy Mkandawire in November last year in a road accident.
According to the latest voters register, Kabwata Constituency has 108,729 voters of which 52,401 are males and 56,328 are females.