First Lady to of­fi­ci­ate at Gwanda Fam­ily Day com­mem­o­ra­tions

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Richard Muponde Gwanda Cor­re­spon­dent

THE First Lady, Dr Grace Mu­gabe, will on Thurs­day of­fi­ci­ate at the In­ter­na­tional Rural Women and Fam­ily Day com­mem­o­ra­tions at Pe­land­aba Sta­dium in Gwanda.

The com­mem­o­ra­tions will be held un­der theme, “Eco­nomic Em­pow­er­ment for the Rural Women through Min­ing Ac­tiv­i­ties for a Healthy Fam­ily.”

The Mata­bele­land South Pro­vin­cial De­vel­op­ment Of­fi­cer in the Min­istry of Women Af­fairs, Gen­der and Com­mu­nity De­vel­op­ment, Ms Mer­jury Sikhundla, yes­ter­day con­firmed that Dr Mu­gabe would grace the oc­ca­sion.

“On the day the First Lady is go­ing to com­mis­sion a women’s Stamp Mill in Collen Bawn which was erected by the gov­ern­ment through its fund­ing part­ner UNDP,” said Ms Sikhundla.

“The project was started by the Re­serve Bank of Zim­babwe some time ago but was not fin­ished. Our Min­istry took it upon it­self to fin­ish the project af­ter check­ing around the coun­try and find­ing that a lot of these projects have been van­dalised.”

She said her Min­istry has the man­date to em­power women so that they have healthy fam­i­lies through min­ing ac­tiv­i­ties.

“Min­ing is a win­dow of the Zim-As­set eco­nomic blue­print. We as­sessed the road we have cov­ered in em­pow­er­ing women who were dis­ad­van­taged by the colo­nial regime. Women now own as­sets which were pre­dom­i­nantly owned by men,” Ms Sikhundla said.

She said women in the prov­ince have been trained by the School of Mines in min­ing ba­sics so that they carry out proper min­ing.

“We did so be­cause we don’t want them to do short cuts as they will be scut­tling gov­ern­ment ef­forts to re­vive the econ­omy through min­ing. We trust the women and they have been sell­ing their gold to Fidelity,” Ms Sikhundla said.

In 2007, women min­ers re­ceived sup­port from the Re­serve Bank of Zim­babwe in the form of in­fra­struc­ture and fenc­ing at des­ig­nated sites.

The site in Gwanda was de­vel­oped into a ser­vice cen­tre where women would be pro­vided with min­ing ser­vices. — @ richardmuponde

Dr Grace Mu­gabe

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