Government is actively working towards bridging gender gaps in innovation and technological advancement, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Monica Mutsvangwa, has said.
She said Zimbabwe had a progressive constitution for promoting gender equality.
“The country has ratified and continues to implement key instruments that provide for gender equality across all sectors.
“To actualise this commitment, the National Development Strategy 1 prioritises the acceleration and intensification of the implementation of ICT systems in both the public and private sectors.
“To this end, the Government has ensured existing policies provide an enabling framework for women and girls’ access to the use of ICTs through the establishment of Community Information Centres in both urban and rural areas, with free training and access to electronic resources.”
She said the Data Protection Act provides for the protection of women and girls from cyberbullying, among other provisions.
“The Smart Zimbabwe 2030 Master Plan has been put in place to increase the usage of ICTs across sectors regardless of geographical location, economic status, or gender.
“In the education sector, Zimbabwe introduced the Education 5.0 policy, which is equipping graduates from institutions of higher learning with skills that empower them to be innovative through transformative science and technology.
“Deliberate efforts are being made to ensure increased enrolment of women and girls in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) through girls’ STEM mentorship programmes, science camps, and scholarships.”
She said the establishment of virtual courts in all 10 provinces of the country creates a system that allows for electronic accessibility of court processes and facilitates a paperless case management system.
“This has the effect of making the justice delivery system affordable, transparent, speedy, and accountable by limiting the paper filings, thereby protecting the interests of witnesses and reducing the backlog of pending cases.
“Most importantly, it reduces the frequency of movement for witnesses and survivors who previously had to frequent the courts for the finalisation, incurring a huge monetary burden on families,” she said.