Where is the money for ZimAsset?

The Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio Economic Transformation is silent on the financing mechanisms to ensure its effective implementation, women’s organisations in Zimbabwe concurred.

Rosemary Siyachitema
Rosemary Siyachitema

Lack of funding towards initiatives targeting provisions that are specific to women in the ZimAsset had the potential to see women fail to realise any meaningful gains from the economic empowerment initiative.

Representatives of women’s organisations some of which include, the UNWOMEN, Women’s Trust, Zimbabwe Women Resource Centre and Network and Kunzwana Women’s Association among others called on treasury to ensure the availability of funds towards women’s initiatives for the ZimAsset to benefit women across the economic spectrum.

Speaking at the International Women’s Day GAD TALK organised by the ZWRCN in partnership with the Women’s Trust in Harare, today, under the title “A Gender Perspective on the ZimAsset”, the Executive Director of ZWRCN, Pamela Mhlanga said women’s economic empowerment was dependent on adequate financing.

“There is an underfunding trend towards stimulating effective participation of women in the economy. Sometimes there is an allocation from treasury towards initiatives targeting women, but there is no disbursement of the said financing,” said Mhlanga.

She said there is need to put up mechanisms to ensure effective monitoring and tracking of the budget expenditure to see where the money is going.

Said Mhlanga: “If we cannot get money from treasury, we need to identify where else we can get the money and this is where we should engage the private sector.”

The government of Zimbabwe introduced the ZimAsset, an economic blue print which aims at accelerating economic growth and wealth creation.

The, four year plan, is anchored on indigenisation, empowerment and employment creation which will be largely propelled by the judicious exploitation of the country’s abundant human and natural resources, according to the Zimbabwean government.

It is built around four strategic clusters namely Food Security and Nutrition; Social Services and Poverty Eradication; Infrastructure and Utilities; and Value Addition and Beneficiation.

Consumer Council of Zimbabwe, Executive Director, Rosemary Siyachitema said the economic empowerment policy had a clear vision on the strategy to be used to achieve its targeted outcome, but lacked the financial modalities of how to implement this.

Said Siyachitema: “The ZimAsset is not specific in terms of who is going to finance what, when and how.

“It does not document the budget that is required to ensure socio economic transformation.”

Siyachitema said unless government crafted the modalities regarding the financing of the ZimAsset and identify how to make it feasible, the country risked ‘staying in the same place’.

Said Melanie Shayanewako from the UNWOMEN: “Most of the issues that are specific to women are in the social cluster of the document.

“There is need to ensure that women have access to productive resources to ensure a level playing field and equal beneficiation from the ZimAsset.”

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