By Lungile Moyo
Civil society organisations and community leaders have been urged to put their words into practice in communities they work with during a policy dialogue meeting on gendered corruption at Sethule lodge in Bulawayo last week.
Addressing stakeholders during the meeting organised by Transparency International Zimbabwe (TIZ) a representative from the Ministry of Women Affairs, Small and Medium Enterprises Development, Dominic Muringi said that gendered corruption looks at how men and women are affected by corruption in different sectors in their societies.
Speaking on behalf of Honourable Jasmine Toffa, a member of parliament for Bulawayo Metropolitan Muringi said that even though it looks at both sexes, societies shouldn’t run away from the fact that women are the most vulnerable group.
“A lot of corruption is there because of the vulnerability of women in the society, which is why it is important for community leaders and civil society organisation to address the issues in the communities they work with”, said Muringi.
“The main goal of gender policy is to eradicate corruption in all spheres of life and to make sure there is equal sharing of property by men and woman.”
Speaking to Amakhosikazi Media, Nomalanga Dube the Treasurer under WCoZ Young Women’s Forum who was present at the meeting said, if well implemented, a gendered corruption program would benefit many lives especially women.
“This will give women information about Zimbabwe Constitution and their rights as women, most women lack knowledge on such things this is why many of them are cheated on by corrupt counterparts”, said Dube.
She also encourged the inclusion of female prisoners in such programs so that they are not left out of the economic empowerment.
Bulawayo ward 1 Councillor Mlandu Ncube commented that continuing to capacitate societies by community leaders and civil society organisation will lead to positive results and everyone should be involved and be aware of corruption and report it without fear.
Speaking to Amakhosikazi Media TIZ Assistant Legal Officer Miss Marylin Sibanda said the dialogue meeting aimed at identifying gaps and gathering information to be used in a gendered corruption position paper that would be submitted by Toffa to parliament.
“We had invited Honourable Toffa to the meeting but she could not make it because of some challenges. We are looking forward to giving her the position paper so that she can submit it on our behalf”, said Sibanda.
Sibanda also said that they organised this meeting to capacitate community leaders and civil society on how to identify corruption and that the local authorities should be held accountable by their community members and as an organisation they are willing to work together with community leaders to tackle issues of corruption.
Asked how they are going to implement programs to deal with corruption Sibanda said they already have ongoing programs in the wards which are led by accountability and monitoring committees,
“We have ongoing programs which help both men and women to identify and report corruption”, she said.
She also added that they have a legal section called ALAC, were they give legal advice to people who are victims or witnesses of corruption and they also assist them to report cases of corruption to the police.
TIZ is a non-governmental organisation which is non- partisan and it focuses on corruption, it seeks to capacitate communities with knowledge on corruption, identify, reject and report corruption.