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Ghanaian protesters storm parliament over sanitary pad tax

Some disgruntled Ghanaians stormed Ghana’s parliament on Thursday to demand the removal of taxes on sanitary pads.

The high cost of sanitary pads, according to the campaigners, is causing absenteeism among girls in school and hygiene issues for the rural poor.

Security officers stopped the protesters, who were clad in red and holding placards.

They were chanting “we want free periods, don’t tax my pad” and their presence disrupted parliamentary activity for a while.

The protesters were made to gather at the entrance of parliament.

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The group said the government should remove the 20% import tax and 12.5% Value Added Tax on sanitary pads which have made them too expensive for many people.

Reactions to protest   

The Speaker of Ghana’s  Parliament Alban Bagbin says he will be taking immediate action to ensure the scrapping of the law that imposes a tax on sanitary pads.

“The House should not have allowed it at all, you know the impact of that law on the human resource development of this country? It’s immeasurable, that is why I suspended sitting and had to attend to them (protesters),” he said.

Bagbin added that he has “a copy of the petition, and I will take immediate action to prevent whoever is a minister proposing that thing to take it off, the next budget it must not appear. It cannot be a tax, please I take a very serious view on this matter.”

The Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) is however against the scrapping of taxes on the pads.

It warned that that removing the taxes on imported pads would make it harder for local manufacturers to compete.

Menstrual hygiene products are classified as finished goods by the Ghanaian Revenue Authority.

Opinion: Tax on Sanitary pad is violence against girls

Sourced from Africa Feeds

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