IT is encouraging to hear that the Government will do everything possible to keep women highly protected against all forms of violence.
According to Energy and Water Development Deputy Minister Charles Zulu, there is need for women to work with the Government to clear all forms of violence against them.
Mr Zulu, who graced a colourful celebrations of International Women’s day in Chipata yesterday, said this would enhance women’s valuable contributions in national building, peace and stability.
The deputy minister is right. Women need protection and must be treated as equal partners in development.
In fact the United Nations has ‘Equality for women is progress for all’ as its theme for this year’s celebrations of International Women’s Day which fell yesterday.
Zambians were, meanwhile, celebrating the day under the theme ‘Inspiring change: Celebrating God’s favour on 50 years of women excellence and achievements’.
These two themes have one common characteristic, that with women’s involvement in all areas of life and, on an equal terms with men, nations could see meaningful development.
To quote UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon: “Countries with more gender equality have better economic growth. Companies with more women leaders perform better. Peace agreements that include women are more durable.
Parliaments with more women enact more legislation on key social issues such as health, education, anti-discrimination and child support.”
Referring to the same occasion, UN Women executive director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka is quoted saying that women spend much of their income on the wellbeing of their children and family, while raising women’s labour force participation increases economic growth.
She concludes: “By ending women’s poverty, we will sustainably and significantly reduce extreme poverty worldwide. Securing their equality would not only benefit them, but everyone as well.”
Here at home, it even much more gratifying to hear President Michael Sata say that the Government has targeted various areas in the country’s economy where it intends to get women entrepreneurs actively involved.