Zimbabwe: Zim, China Women Boost Ties
By Zvamaida Murwira, Zimbabwe Herald
Visiting All China Women's Federation vice president Mrs Cui Yu yesterday committed her movement to deepening relations with the Zanu-PF Women's League in ensuring women empowerment and gender equality.
All China Women's Federation is a mass organisation that unites Chinese women of all ethnic groups and strives for their liberation and development.
Mrs Cui said her movement and Zanu-PF Women's League shared common objectives of ensuring the elevation of the status of women and safeguarding their rights.
She said this in Mazowe where she toured Amai Mugabe Junior School and Mazowe home and Alpha and Omega Dairy Farm, that are the brainchild of First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe.
Mrs Cui arrived in the country on Thursday at the invitation of Zanu-PF Women's League secretary Amai Mugabe to explore ways of sharing experiences between the two sister organisations.
"We have similar goals with those that you have, that of empowering women.
"We have to do a lot of co-operation in promoting women's status in the field of education, culture and business, among others," said Mrs Cui.
She commended the vision of Zanu-PF Women's League to set up a women's bank. "It is such a good idea because it will uplift the welfare of women," she said.
Zanu-PF Women's League deputy secretary, Cde Eunice Sandi Moyo, said women constituted 52 percent of Zimbabwe's population and excluding such a huge population would not only create resentment but would adversely affect economic development.
"The important role played by women in our socio-economic and political spheres explains why since independence there has been a ministry or department dealing with women issues.
"This is a clear indication of the Zanu-PF Government's commitment to address gender disparities that our Government inherited from the colonial white minority," said Cde Sandi Moyo, who is also Bulawayo Provincial Affairs Minister.
She said the new Constitution had progressive provisions on the rights of women, chief among them their quota in Parliament.
"Women now have equal citizenship rights as men. The Gender Commission would be established as an independent constitutional body to monitor the implementation provisions of the new Constitution," she said.
Women empowerment, she said, would remain an unrealised dream unless access to finance was made available.
"Critical to women's economic empowerment in Zimbabwe is finance. To buttress efforts directed at provision of finance, Government is in the process of setting up a Women's Micro Finance Bank as a means of facilitating women's access to credit. The bank is expected to be operational by year-end," she said.
In an interview, Zanu-PF Women's League secretary for information and publicity, Cde Monica Mutsvangwa, said their relationship with the All China Women's Federation was reaching a higher level.
"We want to learn how they have empowered their women.
"We hope that we can learn a lot on wealth creation and empowerment for women.
"We are also looking at issues to do with value addition and beneficiation," said Cde Mutsvangwa, who is also Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Deputy Minister.
Mrs Cui held a meeting on Thursday with Zanu-PF Secretary for Administration Cde Ignatius Chombo.
She told Cde Chombo what China had done to attain gender equality. "Zimbabwe and China have deep political and economic relations and I think the future of our two countries is bright," she said.
Cde Chombo explained what Zimbabwe had done to empower women, saying more of them were now in Parliament.
Zimbabwe and China enjoy good bilateral relations dating back to the liberation struggle when Beijing supported Harare in her attainment of independence on April 18 1980.