SWAZILAND: Act on COP resolutions to ensure the month is worth celebrating

In the month when rural women were commemorating and celebrating International Day of Rural Women (IDRW) and World Food day, some women experienced sorrow since they are still waiting for the rain.

The International Day of Rural Women (IDRW) followed from the realisation that the world celebrates World Food Day but frequently forgets about the farmer who produces the food – most of whom are rural women. The aim of the IDRW was to acknowledge the role played by rural women in feeding their families.

In the past, this would be the month when farmers would be busy cultivating the land. But the damage that has been done by industrial activities has resulted in extreme weather events and has made weather patterns unpredictable. In Swaziland, to date, there has not been any rains to enable farmers to start farming. Year after year, countries attend the United Nations climate change conference, popularly known as COP, only to form part of decisions that will never be fulfilled, emissions that will not be curbed and climate justice which will not be achieved. This is a setback for farmers since if the emissions continue, the uncertainties for farming will continue. Extreme heat kills crops. another concern is that if rains do come, it may even come in the form of floods.

The impact of climate hit rural women particularly hard since they are the majority producers in the agriculture sector. Their seeds get lost due to plants dying before the produce can be attained. Water scarcity exposes women to dangers such as Gender Based Violence (GBV). It is high time that the issue of climate change becomes everybody’s business in order to ensure food security as well as food sovereignty. The capitalists, which are the worst of the polluters, continue to ignore this reality.

It is important that every one plays a role to resolve the climate crisis so that we are able to reduce emissions before nature swallows all of us. It calls for the capitalist who owns big machinery which pollutes the earth to lead efforts in reducing emissions.

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