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Women growing economy, says First Lady

FIRST Lady Esther Lungu congratulates first female fighter pilot and winner of Afro Multi Media Productions “Women of the Year Award” Thokozile Muwamba during a ceremony in Lusaka on Tuesday. PICTURE: THOMAS NSAMA

LINDA NYONDO, Lusaka
FIRST Lady Esther Lungu says the participation of women in national affairs can contribute to reducing poverty because the poor, including many women, become intensively engaged in the growth of the economy.
Mrs Lungu said this year’s theme ‘Promoting inclusiveness in economic participation as a means of attaining sustainable Development’ was appropriate.
She said Zambia has a female Vice-President, 78 percent of women are in agriculture and 49 percent in management positions.
“Zambia has been shaped by a long and rich history of bold women who have continued to create change,” she said.
Mrs Lungu was speaking during an awards-giving ceremony for the Zambia Women Award where 19 women were recognised for their achievements.
She said women all over Zambia had impacted the country through positive contributions to their families and communities.
Mrs Lungu urged organisers of the awards to spread their search to other sectors and include women in the rural areas who are contributing to the country at different levels.
“I have traversed our rural landscape and have seen champions who deliver children under candlelight and some women use basic equipment to harvest tonnes of crops,” she said.
Mrs Lungu said next year’s awards should have a bias of women who might not have gone far in education but have made a mark in their communities.
Mrs Lungu said women should speak for children who are forced into early marriage and victims of gender-based violence.
And Zambia Women Awards organising committee chairperson Chilufya Mwaba said many Zambian women do a lot of things privately which contributes to the economic and social development of Zambia.
“Most of the women achievements are not celebrated. The women to be awarded this year are a mere representation,” she said.

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