Woman legislator advocates for polygamy if wives do not want to bear more children

Rosemary Goto (MP)

A Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front senator says men should be allowed to marry more women if their wives won’t bear more children.

Rosemary Goto said procreation was very important.

Contributing to a motion by Senator Mike Musaka, who urged the government to promote population growth saying a family should have a minimum of eight children so that Zimbabwe could be economically viable, Goto it was good to have more children because they would help preserve the family in case some died.

“The truth is we should bear more children.  Procreation is very important.  There is nothing that can be done if there is no procreation,” she said.

“If the family is there over the festive season, you will enjoy yourself.  If you do not have children, what do you do?  If you only have two children and one dies, you are only left with one.

“Yes, you might say that God has made his decision but if you have more children, you are still able to enjoy.  Chief, we really want to thank you for all that you say.

“Polygamy is not bad. It is actually very good because women do not want to give birth.  So, it is better that more women come in to bear more children.  Therefore, I want to support this motion.

“Right now, I have six children but among them, the one with the most children only has three.  I always try and explain to them that if one dies what is going to happen.  I always tell them that we need the family name to continue.  In the end, the Goto family will be extinct, so we need to keep the family name going.”

Below are her comments together with those of two other senators who spoke before her

HON. SEN. MURWIRA: Thank you Mr. President for the opportunity that you have given me. I want to second the motion moved by Hon. Sen. Musaka which is focusing on population increase. Increase in population is good because it has a positive bearing on our economy and businesses. For example, Mr. President, it is like Zim Gold, every month it sells 10 000 litres.  If we were to bear more children and come to a population of 20 million, it means the litres would increase and also the money that we get in the country will increase, as well as the labour and employment is created. It is not only Zim Gold that we are talking about but we are talking about other companies that will come into this nation.

Mr. President, this will lead to positive development on the part of Government and the people.   More profit means that even companies will now be resuscitated. Once companies are operational, it means people can now get employment. Mr. President, an increase in population attract investors from outside because they are assured that there are customers in Zimbabwe.  My request to the Government is that what we are talking about is not that tomorrow we should wake up and say children should be born.  We want the Government to take this up and consider this.  We also request Senators and MPs to take the issue to their constituencies and encourage people to bear more children.

Mr. President, we will be doing this to ensure that we have more schools, hospitals, wider roads, decent accommodation and other things that will actually lead to the development of this country.  I want to thank you Mr. President.

*HON. SEN. BHOBHO:  Thank you Mr. President for giving me this opportunity to add my voice on the motion that was moved by Hon. Sen. Musaka.  I realise that it is very important because he mentioned a very important point that we need to bear more children.  For us to have a nation, it is all about having more people.  For us to have soldiers, it is because of the children that we bear.  In our time, we gave birth to a number of children.  If our generation comes to pass, there will be no children.  The chiefs were excited because they had a list of members in their community and they knew that the Bhobho family had so many people and they would be able to articulate how the chief runs his community.

We are saying, those of child bearing age should bear more children, not one or two because we need these children to be in the Defence Forces.  Thank you Mr. President.

*HON. SEN. GOTO:  Thank you Mr. President.  I rise to support the motion moved by Hon. Sen. Musaka and seconded by Hon. Sen. Murwira.  This is a very important motion.  We might be laughing but for us to be in this House, it is because we were born.  He explained that he wants people to bear more children so that there is a population increase.  If we had not been born, we could not be here.  It is true people should bear more children.  If people are few in a country it is not a nation.

I want to give an example without giving external forces.  As we moved around Mashonaland East province during COPAC outreach programme, I always told people that we should not have few children.  People would laugh at me when I was encouraging them to have more children.  I explained to them the advantages of having more children.  During the COPAC meetings, there was no one breast feeding.  When we went to Mudzi, I saw young women who were breastfeeding and I actually said to them it is better to go and sit there and breast feed from there because the noise is disrupting us.  In Hwedza, there were no young women who were breastfeeding.

I challenge people to say, if you become old, what will happen to the party.  You find people bearing just two children.  We know the cost of living is high but a person needs to do justice when it comes to bearing children.  Hon. Sen. Musaka, we support your motion that people should bear more children; there is no problem there.

In my family, we are ten.  Others died but we are all there.  When we needed mealie-meal, we would make sure we get a 90kg of mealie-meal and a big pot will be used to cook for us to have something to eat.  Nowadays, you find people talk of the cost of living.  For us to have more schools, it will be a result of having an increase in population.  My husband always says a child is a goblin because when we were in the fields with the children during school holidays, we would finish to work on one hectare in no time.  If you have one child, it will take time for you to finish ploughing a hectare.  If you have two children, you end up making negative comments about the person with more children.

Others used to give birth with limited spacing and that is what is supposed to happen.  The truth is we should bear more children.  Procreation is very important.  There is nothing that can be done if there is no procreation.  If the family is there over the festive season, you will enjoy yourself.  If you do not have children, what do you do?  If you only have two children and one dies, you are only left with one.  Yes, you might say that God has made his decision but if you have more children, you are still able to enjoy.  Chief, we really want to thank you for all that you say.  Polygamy is not bad. It is actually very good because women do not want to give birth.  So, it is better that more women come in to bear more children.  Therefore, I want to support this motion.

Hon. Sen. Musaka, all those who are going to contribute to this motion will be positive.  Right now, I have six children but among them, the one with the most children only has three.  I always try and explain to them that if one dies what is going to happen.  I always tell them that we need the family name to continue.  In the end, the Goto family will be extinct, so we need to keep the family name going.  I thank you Mr. President.

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