Midlands women in business were last Friday recognised for their outstanding performances in their respective fields in the inaugural Women in Business Coalition (WBC) Awards ceremony held at Gweru Polytechnic College.
Gracing the occasion to officially launch the glamorous event was Minister of Youth and Women Affairs, Dr Sithembiso Nyoni accompanied by Minister of State for Provincial Affairs in the Midlands, Owen Ncube.
Officially opening the WBC Awards ceremony, Nyoni encouraged Midlands women to take a strategic stand in the business industry in line with government's ' Zimbabwe is open for business' policy.
"I was pleased when I heard that you had organised such motivational awards. In the new dispensation under President Emmerson Mnangagwa which has declared Zimbabwe open for business, we should take it upon ourselves to open the gates for investors, starting with ourselves," said Nyoni.
She called on other women to emulate Midlands WBC to help each other get out of the shackles of feminine poverty by assisting each other.
"I came here really motivated. As women we must do away with the pull her down syndrome; today I stand in solidarity with you and hope other women in Zimbabwe can copy what you have initiated, that when a woman is down all of us must pull them up and mentor them until they can walk if not run," added Nyoni.
WBC co-founder and President, Moreblessing Kunyangwe, who is the Manager of Zimbabwe General Medical Aid Fund (ZGMAF), a subsidiary of the TM Group of companies, reiterated Nyoni's sentiments that women should take advantage of the new government economic policies of turning around the fortunes of the country.
"Musha mukadzi, this economic turnaround can only be achievable with a complete inclusion of women, with us women being successful entrepreneurs, taking up positions of leadership and being part of those championing economic development.
"Madzimai nguva yemakuhwa yakapera, it is now time to build the nation by creating strong bonds that will ensure the revival and growth of the nation," Kunyangwe said.
Another co-founder of Midlands WBC, Vimbi Chingwaramusee, said the organisation was established by four women inspired by one of her programmes she was presenting on radio.
"The organisation is meant to motivate women in business and promote business synergies for women in Zimbabwe. It was formed based on 98.4 FM Talk's (show/program) business segment which I host and we said we cannot wait for government to help us as women but we should help each other instead," she said.
The award ceremony saw many prominent women being recognised for their outstanding performances in their respective fields including Midlands' only gynecologist Dr Veld Mshangwe, Television personality Chipo Mkaratikwa (Siyoyo), gospel musician Respina Patai popularly known as Mai Patai, Chaplin High School Head Mrs Rosemary Marufu, Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation's Jacqueline Gwemende, Gweru Town Clerk, Elizabeth Gwatipedza among several others.
Present during the WBC award ceremony was also Gweru Mayor Councilor Charles Chikozho (represented), Kwekwe Mayor Matenda Madzoke and many others.
The awards were sponsored by TM Group, Pote Holdings, Metbank and OK Mart.