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Zimbabwe Gender Equality in Media Regulation country report Launched

Gender Media Connect in Partnership with FOJO – Media Institute today in Harare launched a report on Gender equality and media regulation which zoomed in on how gender equality and women’s freedom of expression are integrated into media regulation, self-regulation and within media in-house policies.
This study supported by Fojo Media Institute in collaboration with Gothenburg University’s Department of Journalism, Media & Communication (JMG) and other partners used the assessed the content of laws and policies, the institutional framework of regulatory bodies, and the traditions and practice within media houses and media training institutions.
Specifically, research gathered data on media in gender equality laws; gender in media and other laws; national and self-regulatory bodies; and gender policies in media houses, media-based civil society organizations, and media training institutions.
While Zimbabwe’s legislative and regulatory framework on gender equality is strong on paper, this has not been effectively utilized to inform the content of enacted media laws and policies whose language is generic.
Gender and Media Connect National Director, Abigail Gamanya highlighted that Zimbabwe has a good foundation of laws that can create a conducive environment for women in all sectors.
Gamanya said: “Zimbabwe’s Constitution provides for the rights to freedom of expression, media freedom, and access to information thereby presenting opportunities for the creation of a conducive operating environment”
This study acknowledges that the implementation of principles around gender equality and women empowerment in general, is low and there is a lack of accountability to the constitution including by most of the non-gender regulatory bodies.
This, the report said, has resulted in media policies, structures, and content decidedly remaining static or regressing at the expense of women as media workers, as consumers of media products, and as citizens. While the media demands constitutional accountability from other stakeholders in socio-economic and political spheres, it has not held itself to those same standards.