Zimbabwe: First Lady, Regional Counterparts to Launch ‘We Are Equal’ Campaign in Mozambique

Tendai Rupapa in MAPUTO, Mozambique

FIRST Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa is among her regional counterparts who are here at the invitation of Mozambican First Lady Dr Isaura Nyusi for the launch of the “We are Equal campaign” and the signing of the “Zero Waste” commitment as the mothers of nations cement relations and share ideas on how best to serve people.

This comes at a time African First Ladies, on the advice of Amai Mnangagwa, have seen it fit to visit each other and meet regularly to share ideas and find solutions to pressing challenges instead of just meeting on the sidelines of major summits as had hitherto, been the tradition.

Dr Mnangagwa is joining Mrs Monica Chakwera of Malawi, Senator Oluremi Tinubu of Nigeria, Madam Neo Jane Masisi of Botswana and Mrs Jeannette Kagame of Rwanda. The Kingdom of Eswatini will also be represented.

Amai Mnangagwa who recently hosted the first-of its-kind and oversubscribed high level meeting of African First Ladies and other stakeholders ahead of the 22nd edition of ICASA, is on record saying: “In most cases, as First Ladies, we do our meetings on the sidelines of major summits. However, there is need for us to visit each other and meet regularly.

“If we continue to have these kinds of meetings and visit each other’s countries, we will do more as mothers of nations. We get to know more and we encourage each other to do more for our people.”

First Ladies from Mozambique, Botswana, Nigeria and representatives from Egypt, Burundi, Angola and Zambia attended the high level meeting in Victoria Falls.

Mrs Nyusi paid a courtesy call on Dr Mnangagwa yesterday after her arrival and they held wide-ranging discussions and exchanged notes on various programmes.

First Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa meets her Mozambican counterpart Dr Isaura Nyusi who invited her for today’s launch of “We are equal campaign” and “Zero waste” commitment in Maputo

The “We are Equal” campaign is a continental initiative by the First Ladies through their Organisation of African First Ladies for Development (OAFLAD).

It seeks to close the gender gap in Africa and ensure males and females have equal access to education, healthcare and economic opportunities.

Dr Mnangagwa launched the “We Are Equal” campaign in November last year.

The campaign, according to OAFLAD, focuses on key action areas including women’s health, access to reproductive healthcare, gender-based violence, education and economic empowerment.

It also seeks to inject new urgency into the movement of gender equality.

Speaking at the launch of the campaign in New York, the United States last September, Dr Mnangagwa said Zimbabwe fully subscribed to it.

“We fully endorse the ‘We are Equal’ message which talks to the issue of gender equity and equality. We firmly believe that boys and girls, women and men are equal and we should close the gap in terms of education, economic empowerment, health and gender-based violence,” she said.

Zero Waste is a goal to re-design resource lifecycles so that materials are reused and waste is minimal.

First Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa with her Mozambican counterpart Dr Isaura Nyusi who invited her for today’s launch of “We are equal campaign” and “Zero waste” commitment in Maputo, Mozambique yesterday. – Pictures: John Manzongo

As Zimbabwe’s environmental patron, Dr Mnangagwa signed the Global Zero Waste goodwill declaration to implement sound waste management practices on the sidelines of the 78th United Nations General Assembly in New York.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip became the first “Zero Waste” volunteer by being the inaugural signatory to the declaration.

The movement is being spearheaded by First Lady of Türkiye, Mrs Emine Erdogan and Dr Mnangagwa joined other global First Ladies in signing the declaration becoming one of the 30 First Ladies who have appended their signatures to the pledge.

The First Ladies and other high-profile environment champions pledged to promote the zero waste approach worldwide and share best practices for its wider recognition and application.

In Zimbabwe, Dr Mnangagwa launched the first of the kind colour-coded underground waste disposal facilities which are ideal for waste separation, emit less odour, are less prone to vandalism and have a high aesthetic appeal.

Back home, Dr Mnangagwa is also promoting recycling training in all the country’s provinces so that communities turn waste into money.

She also works with theatre groups to provide educatainment on the importance of waste management as she also participates in the cleaning of the streets to ensure cleanliness to ward off diseases.

Her office also works with the Ministry of Environment, Climate and Wildlife through the Environmental Management Agency to roll out campaign programmes to capacitate the grassroots communities on the best practices on management of waste including reuse, recovery and recycling as a business.

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