Women account for approximately half of whichever nation’s populace. Yet, in nearly all countries, females play a much less role than men in contributing towards the worth of recorded production in labour force participation. Under-utilizing female labour has palpable consequences for economic welfare and growth. Quite a lot of factors, both economic and non-economic could be deemed liable for this. Particular, the partaking of women in the labour force seems to depend more on the social environment. Customarily, women were considered as homemakers, who administer and direct the relationships and activities at home. Formerly, in Africa, women stayed behind at home while their husbands and sons went out to the farm to work. Historically, also, men would go out hunting, while women would engage in gathering of vegetation and stay at home taking care of the house. The sexual division of the workforce in which the males would hunt and the females gather wild fruits and vegetables was a shared experience between hunter-gatherer societies globally. But at home, however, they were not inactive as they were involved in manual processing of food crops and other farm harvests in supplement to their housekeeping responsibilities. With the introduction of western education, industrialization and paid employment, men, together with women, drifted into the modern sector of the economy. And today, there are visible changes in the perception of women, principally because they have greater opportunities for education than before. They now constitute themselves into various societies or organizations and they are aggressively fighting for the liberalization of the role of women as opposed to restricting them to the home and home-based activities.
1.1: BACKGROUND OF STUDY
Some formal and informal barriers which obstruct entry of women into many different occupational groupings include lack of education, customs and religious practices, management and worker attitudes, labour laws, trading customs, difficulties in combining domestic and labour market activities, e.t.c. Historically, few women were occupied in top management levels of formal sector establishments simply because the majority of them would lack the educational qualifications necessary for such positions. However, this is most likely set to change given that the girl child now has equally preferential treatment when in comes to the educational opportunities present in Zimbabwe. The 2011 Labour Force and Child Labour Survey (LFCLS), by ZIMSTAT, provides an estimate of the population in private households. The 2011 Survey gave the population of Zimbabwe as 11 930 038 * Males: 5 727 571 (48%)
* Females: 6 202 467 (52%)
Evidently, showing the dominance of females in Zimbabwe as is the usual case. The chart bellow gives an insight of the sex distribution in Zimbabwe.
Source: ZIMSTAT 2011 LFCLS
The level of educational attainment is one of the main determinants of Female Labour Force Participation. The presentations below describe the education characteristics of the population aged 5 years and above in relation to school attendance, highest level of education completed and literacy rate, according to data from ZIMSTAT.
The above diagrams clearly show that, despite males being the minority they seem to have better enhanced chances of education or seem to be enrolled more than females in school. Fig 2 depicts that of Zimbabwe’s male population, 57.1% left school, 39.3% are at school and only 3.5% have never been to school. Of Zimbabwe’s female population, on the other hand, 59% left school, 34.7% are at school and 6.2% have never been. Considering that the country’s female population is greater than the male population, this translates to a wider margin difference between the different sexes in terms of those who are in school and/or left school. This can be seen again in Fig 3 which represents the school enrolment ratios between the...
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