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Parliament pushes for ratification of AU Protocol on Social Security

Story by John Nhandara

PARLIAMENT is pushing for the signing and ratification of the African Union Protocol on Social Security and Social Protection to strengthen the country’s social protection programmes.

An engagement between parliament and stakeholders on the signing and ratification of the AU Protocol on Social Security has seen a consensus being reached on the need to expedite ratification of the protocol if the country is to strengthen its social protection systems.

“If Zimbabwe signs and ratifies this protocol it will make history by being the first African country to do so. Ratification of the protocol comes with a lot of advantages as it gives us guidelines on how to align our legislation and improve social security,” said Platform for Social Protection Executive Director, Dr Tavengwa Nhongo.

Parliament acknowledged the importance of ratifying the protocol to propel comprehensive social protection programmes and safety nets.

“Signing and ratifying the protocol means we are aligning our laws to regional and international standards. It will ensure we improve livelihoods of the disabled, the elderly and the less privileged,” noted Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare chairperson, Hon Dorothy Mashonganyika.

Meanwhile, the role of the media in promoting the ratification of the AU protocol was also brought to the fore.

Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation News Editor Mr Ian Zvoma said, “There is need to give prominence in the reportage of the signing and ratification of the AU Protocol on Social Security and Social Protection so that society is aware. The media is important as it plays a watchdog role being regarded as the 4th Estate.”

The African Union Protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on the Rights of Citizens to Social Protection and Social Protection is a comprehensive document aimed at enhancing social welfare and economic stability across the African continent.

It was adopted by the African Union Heads of State and Government in February 2022.

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