The Health Ministry and stakeholders in the Education Sector have called for a total scrap of taxes on sanitary pads and other menstrual products to boost menstrual hygiene.

Speaking at an event to commemorate the Menstrual Hygiene Day on Saturday, May 28, the Head of Nursing and Midwifery at the Ministry, Dr Barnabas Yeboah, said the 20% tax on menstrual products should be removed to make them easily accessible.

“Inadequate sanitary facilities affect girls especially at school, causing them to miss classes during their menstruation or even drop out of school.

“Government should remove market entry barriers such as tax incentives for private and local manufacturing companies,” he said.

The Ghana Education Service (GES) is already implementing a programme that will lay more emphasis on school facilities and expansion of water resources in urban areas to provide assistance to adolescent girls.

Remove tax on sanitary pads to enhance access to menstrual products – Government told
Some participants at the event

But stakeholders are worried that after several years of advocacy, taxes on sanitary wears are still not removed.

Speaking at the same event, a representative of the Education Ministry, Mrs Asare Donkor, urged the GES and the Gender Ministry to strive at decreasing the incidence of mockery and harassment girls face in school during their menstrual period.

Remove tax on sanitary pads to enhance access to menstrual products – Government told
Mrs Asare Donkor

She noted that standardised sick bays will be set up in schools to provide services to girls who may need assistance.

“The Ministry has developed educational material to support the teaching of menstrual health management in schools…the Ministry will help create platforms for menstrual health educators and encourage health checkups and empower our girls to speak up from a young age and support their peers,” Mrs Donkor added.

Meanwhile, the GES has committed to supporting communities in empowering over 5,000 adolescents, teachers and parents on menstrual hygiene management.