LINDA BECOMES VICTIM OF CYBER BULLYING, ABUSE
Aspiring independent Member of Parliament for Harare Central Linda Masarira has expressed disgust over social media bullies using the cyberspace to spew hate and gender discrimination, particularly against women in politics.
Owing to a growth in online activity in the country and scant financial resources, incapacitated contenders, mostly those not running on established party tickets in this year’s upcoming elections, have resorted to campaigning on different social media platforms.
However, by being active on cyberspace many have also exposed themselves to online trolls.
Speaking to NewsDay on the sidelines of the Institute for Young Women’s Development’s (IYWD) #VoteRunLead campaign event last week, Masarira said although relatively cheap, social media campaigns have had sour repercussions for female candidates.
“The challenge that is crosscutting is finance and resources that is why I have resorted mainly to social media and door-to-door campaigns because it is cheaper and you meet one on one with the people,” she said.
“[But] the only complaint I have is cyberbullying and derogatory statements on social media, where I think Zimbabweans have to mature from petty politics of personalisation [and] attack an idea not an individual because if you think you can do better than me get into the race.”
Masarira also added that the attack on her se_xuality and children are some of the notable abuses she has encountered amid a barrage of attacks apparently centred on gender insensitivity.