Climate change impacting women farmers adversely in Mash West

By Nhau Mangirazi

ZVIMBA– Mashonaland West Proportional Representation (PR) member of Parliament Honourable Concillia Masuku-Chinanzvavana has bemoaned impact of climate change affecting women.

She is among women legislators who have seen the impact of climate change affecting women in former commercial farms around Zvimba, within Mashonaland West following the controversial land reform in early 2000.

She is  a member of portfolio committee on environment and tourism and says climate change is affecting negatively on food security within Southern Africa and Zimbabwe has not been spared.

‘Generally, climate change is a reality affecting the agricultural sector that is backbone of our economy,’ says Chinanzvavana.

‘‘I have no boundaries in the province as non-constituency Member of Parliament. We augment elected local MPs in their constituencies through feedback between them and electorate,’’ she explains.

A mother of three, Chinanzvavana made it into Parliament through Women
Quota commonly known PR following the July 2013 harmonised election.

‘‘It is imperative that MPs give feedback to their constituencies,’ she says.

A former farm worker Theresa Banda of Ward 22 in Zvimba South admits that late rainfall pattern is affecting them at some farms around Banket area.

‘‘Few of the resettled farmers are using irrigation schemes affecting wheat and maize production,’ she explains.

Chinanzvavana was part of national delegation to the Conference of all Parties (COP) 22 in 2016, in Marrakesh Morocco.

‘It was a great eye opener and added to my commitment to advocate on Environment and Climate Change issues. l am raring to go and committed to deliver on the legislative mandate to improve, pushing for laws that help us secure better environment. Women are affected by climate change and food security. It is our mandate as Parliament to formulate policies that will help mitigate this,’ she adds.

A Chinhoyi based environment advocate Thomas Makanda says poor governance where some council authorities allocate residential and commercial stands on wetlands.

‘The allocation of stands on wetlands is an issue that Parliament must address as a policy issue. It is affecting climate change that is affecting water bodies,’ says Makanda.

He adds, that Parliament must enact laws that will help address the issues affecting on climate change.

‘It is welcome that MPs are exposed internationally so that they understand effects of abusing wetlands. Climate change is a reality affecting weather and rainfall patterns. This will affect our country food security and economy as our economy is agro-based,’ he complains.

Chinanzvavana admits that she will not give up in her quest in ‘bridging gap’ between government and the electorate.

‘We have a role to play and through feedback, constant interaction with affected communities, civic organisations to make a difference on our approach,’ she says.