The Secretariat of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) has joined forces with the Ministry of Women Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development in Zimbabwe to unveil the National Strategy to prevent and address Gender-Based Violence (GBV) for the period 2023-2030.
This collaborative initiative aims to provide a comprehensive framework guiding Zimbabwe’s response to GBV, outlining priority areas and specific actions for the government and society at large.
The strategy emphasizes a multi-sectoral and well-coordinated approach to address the complex and pervasive nature of GBV, recognizing its intersectionality with various social and gender variables.
The unveiling ceremony, held on December 15th, 2023, in Harare, was graced by Senator Monica Mutsvangwa, the Minister of Women Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises.
Senator Mutsvangwa underscored the consultative process involved in developing the strategy, which included physical reviews and validation meetings with support from the SADC Secretariat, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) under the Spotlight Initiative.
Minister Mutsvangwa emphasized the government’s commitment to combating GBV, citing existing legal and policy frameworks such as the Domestic Violence Act. She highlighted the protective role of these laws in safeguarding victims of domestic violence.
The Minister also noted the activation of institutional machinery through the establishment of a robust multi-sectoral gender mechanism led by the Ministry of Women Affairs.
Key institutions, including the Zimbabwe Gender Commission and Anti Domestic Violence Council, were acknowledged for their critical role in promoting gender equality.
Minister Mutsvangwa pledged efforts to ensure these institutions are adequately resourced and operationalized to effectively serve their purpose.
The collaborative launch signals a significant step toward fostering a safer and more secure environment for women and girls in Zimbabwe, aligning with regional and global efforts to eliminate Gender-Based Violence.
Source: SADC Secretariat