UPND deputy spokesperson Cornelius Mweetwa hopes this year’s International Women’s Day will be a starting point for a better Zambia, among political parties.
Mweetwa confirmed on Saturday that UPND structures across Zambia would participate in this year’s International Women’s Day (IWD) that is being celebrated today.
He reminded UPND members to be mindful of their safety, as they go out to commemorate IWD.
This year’s IWD is being commemorated under the theme: ‘Generation equality: realising women’s rights.’
“All our party structures right across the country are accordingly informed that those who are ready, capable of mobilising to participate, please go ahead and participate on this important women’s day. This is not a political day [but] a day to celebrate women and their achievements,” said Mweetwa, who is also Choma Central UPND member of parliament.
“We would like to urge our colleagues in the Patriotic Front to ensure that they do not send violent youths to go and disrupt these functions, like we saw last time where our youth went to participate and there was disorder. Let this International Women’s Day be a starting point for a better Zambia for all.”
Meanwhile, UPND secretary general Stephen Katuka, in a statement yesterday, wished all women in Zambia a happy International Women’s Day.
He said the opposition party appreciated the role women had continued to play in society.
Katuka, however, regretted that violation of women’s rights in Zambia had remained a challenge, with gender-based violence (GBV) cases on the increase.
“GBV can only be addressed if men across the country take responsibility and realise that women are equal beings who do not need to be subjected to pain. They need love, support and appreciation,” Katuka said. “Above all, they need to explore their potentials in all spheres of life without interference. We note that government has not done enough in promoting awareness across the country to stop GBV.”
He appealed to the Zambia Police to protect all women who would participate “to avoid a repeat of GBV cases perpetrated by PF cadres who stripped-off our woman naked during a public function like this one.”
“As many may recall, one of our female youths was badly attacked and stripped off in full view of Republican Vice-President Inonge Wina, who could have been the first one to condemn such a GBV case but remained politicking,” stated Katuka.