Daniel Mhonda Business Correspondent
WOMEN in mining have petitioned Government seeking its intervention in addressing challenges inhibiting the bulky of their counterparts from venturing into the sector, arguing that the ground was largely tilted in favour of their male counterparts.
The women said they want to be accorded equal opportunities as their male counterparts in addressing challenges responsible for their sidelining.
The women alleged that they were experiencing problems such as victimisation, dispossession of claims by men as well as gender-based violence.
Manicaland representative for the Zimbabwe Miners Association Mrs Judith Shadaya told The Post Business recently that women in Mutasa and Marange have petitioned Government appealing for a legal framework to protect them.
“We want both public and private sector to invest more in women in mining and link them to the strategic partners. We have only 60 women who own claims out of the 600 claims registered in Manicaland. This is because many women fear venturing into mining,” she said.
She said some women have been turned down by institutions that should be offering mining assistance.
Mrs Shadaya also said there is need for a legal framework to ensure the security of women in mining.
“Women sometimes face gender-based violence from machete gangs. They come to our claims and dispossess us from our mines because they know we cannot physically protect ourselves from them.
“Some women also face dispossession of their claims by men who are financially powerful who connive with some corrupt officials,” she said.
Mrs Shadaya said there is need also for women to get mining education to enable them to improve the quality and quantity of their mined products.
“There is need to educate women in mining so that they are able to produce sustainable frameworks in the sector that will help them to make ends meet as well as grow their businesses into big mining ventures that benefit community,” she said.