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NDC Women’s wing fights for sustainable Menstrual Hygiene

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Each year, May 28 is a day set aside to address the issues of menstrual hygiene and the total wellbeing of the women.

Unfortunately, little progress have been made in educating and providing a more lasting solution to the many ordinary Ghanaian adolescent girls in our rural and peri-urban squatter who cannot afford the bill that accompany periods.

The educational structure of Ghana starts from the basic level where most girls start menstruating. At that age range of nine to eleven years, they depend solely on their parents/guardians.

There are five major issues that linger:
1.The sky rocketing prices of sanitary towels due to a whooping 20% import duty tax and 12.5% value added tax on sanitary products.
2.Availability of washrooms in rural and peri-urban schools.
3.At that time of the month,most girls miss classes.


4.Losing interest in school altogether.
5.Teenage pregnancy.(in the case of the Ahafo Ano South District where the menace of teenagers who get impregnated in a sex transaction for Ghc20 sanitary pad persist)

Under the NDC government led by H.E John Dramani Mahama, Ghana was granted a $156 million loan from the world bank to improve our education sector. The “free sanitary towels policy” for female pupils and students in our high schools was proposed under the scope. This was going to deal with all the issues the girl child goes through at that time of the month but the then opposition party in government now reduced and labelled this policy as demonic and satanic.

But here we are today being stared in the face with “sex for pad” canker coupled with urinary tract infections and other risky health issues caused by poor menstrual hygiene.

After sharing sanitary pads to commemorate the today, what happens to the remaining eleven months of the year?

This worrying development due to unprecedented economic hardships calls for an immediate action from stakeholders for policy formulation to provide a lasting solution.

The women’s wing of the NDC calls on the President, H.E Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to :
1. Exempt the 20% import duty tax on Sanitary towels.
2.Cancel the 12.5% Value Added Tax(VAT) on sanitary products.
3.A washroom infrastructure boom in every basic and high school in Ghana.
4. Government assistance to the two talented Ghanaian women, Emily Otoo-Quayson and Matilda Sampong,who make sanitary pad from banana stem. This will provide a cheaper alternative.

Menstruation is not a luxury. Menstruation is not a matter of choice.Stop taxing our periods now!!!

Signed:
Dr. Hanna Louisa Bisiw
National Women’s Organizer, NDC

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