Cannot Women be part of Politics?

Behind every successful man, they say, there is a woman. This saying points out the fact that women are undeniably very essential ingredients in the recipe for a man’s success. Women work tirelessly behind the scenes in order for men to flourish, even though they are unseen most of the times, and rarely spoken of.

Most successful men, including politicians, have women in their lives of success. Women who encourage them – Women who nourish them with care and love and make their opponents matter less – Women who always support them whether they win or lose and above all advise them, play a vital role in the lives of men. A reference can be made from what the President of America, Mr. Barack Obama, said in his 2012 election victory speech.  “I would not have been the man I am today without the woman who agreed to marry me 20 years ago” (politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com).

If women can be good at being the ones behind men’s success why can’t they also be given a successful life, and a free will to choose their own successful path which would also be a success to the society.

Women are usually not accorded the recognition that they deserve for the hard work they do. In many cases than just one, they are overlooked, ignored and taken advantage of, as though they are creatures of less worthiness.

Women tend to put other people’s interests before them more often. For instance the only two female African presidents (Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Joyce Banda) of Liberia and Malawi respectively have pledged to improve women’s lives across the continent. Commenting on the high Malawaian maternal mortality rate, Joyce Banda said “as a woman president, I feel it is my obligation to stop the unnecessary deaths of women” (www.ipnews.net).

In remote areas, women suffer the most. They pass through the trauma of giving birth in their homes due to lack of medical facilities. They travel long distances in search of water and firewood, and toil hard in the fields to earn a living. The women who are deprived of even at times basic education, yet manage the household well with the little funds they obtain – either as a loyal and caring wife and mother, as a single or widowed mother, or as a sister – overcoming all harassment and obstacles. If lack of education does not hinder their household management, then why should it effect on their participation in the society, in taking different roles.

Men have always had the majority sex representation in parliament in Zambia for example, and yet the country is far from developing.

In a home, parents set rules. When a child fails to be following the rules, the mother is often blamed, but not the father. The reason for this is that mothers are expected to ensure that their children follow the rules, most of the time laid down by the males of the family. The males of the house also know that women are good at implementing rules either through love and care or using their sternness and strength.

It is not that only women are suitable for politics; nothing should be left for either men or women to handle alone. But both sexes need to participate in discussing, decision making and implementing what is needed for the developing of a society – of a country, which also includes participation of more women and inclusion of more women into politics.

Linda Mupemo | Zambia