Zambia: NGOs applauds enactment of gender equality, equity law in Zambia

Lusaka, Zambia (PANA) - Zambia's Non-Governmental Organisations Coordinating Council (NGOCC) has commended the Ministry of Gender and the women’s movement in the country following the passing of the Gender Equality and Equity Bill into law by parliament this week.

NGOCC chairperson Sara Longwe said Friday that the enactment of the law signifies government’s commitment in domesticating the international and regional instruments that promote gender equality and women’s empowerment in Zambia.

“As a women’s movement we also take this opportunity to thank the Members of Parliament who passed this progressive law that contains a number of progressive provisions which, if implemented, will enhance gender equity and equality in the country,” Longwe said.

Zambia ratified the 1979 UN Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) in 1985, the 2008 Southern African Development Community (SADC) Protocol on Gender and Development in 2012 and the 2003 Protocol of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa in 2006.

For a very long time, the civil society has expressed concern that gender equity and equality had remained a challenge in Zambia as women largely continued to be excluded from participating in a number of social, economic and political activities.

Longwe said as an organisation they are delighted that Gender Equity and Equality law also provides for the establishment of a Gender Commission which will ensure the introduction of progressive measures to promote gender equity and equality.

The Commission will help safeguard and monitor the implementation of the Act and should be able to handle complaints as well as initiate legal prosecution of cases of discrimination or non-compliance.

"NGOCC is hopeful that the Gender Equity and Equality law will create a Zambia where women fully take part and benefit from the socioeconomic, cultural and political development of the nation," Longwe remarked.

-0- PANA MM/AR 4Dec2015

04 december 2015 15:27:18

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