Creating a conducive legal and policy environment for women in mining in Zimbabwe
The site of women miners conducting illegal mining activities is a cause for concern. They conduct mining activities but at the back of their minds is fear of arrest, confiscation of the minerals and unsafe conditions. To its credit, mining can result in significant increase in household income. It is therefore important that the mining activities be conducted in a conducive atmosphere. Zimbabwe has many laws on mining and the environment. These include the Base Minerals Export Control Act; Precious Stones Trade Act, Gold Trade and Copper Act, the Mines and Minerals Act among many others. There are also many legal and policy requirements for one to be able to conduct mining activities legally. Women miners are lost in the maze of these laws and policies. Most of the mining legislation has not kept up to date with the current environment and gender equity and equality. Women‟s economic empowerment is key to the development of Zimbabwe. The government of Zimbabwe through the Ministry of Women Affairs, Gender and Community Development is striving to improve the lives of women through economic empowerment. Creating a conducive mining legal environment for women in Zimbabwe will go a long way in ensuring that the women miners are able to lead better lives. It will also contribute to the economic growth of Zimbabwe.