H.E Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo
I don’t really remember the last time I wrote a letter, but I choose to believe this is the easiest and fastest way to reach you. I feel if anyone would read my letter, you would. I hope that you won’t take this out of context.
I will go straight to the point becasue just as the President of the Republic, i'm in a hurry to see this problem fixed.
Beautiful Rebecca as your husband refers to you in public, GHS10 might not be much, but my heart skipped a beat when I took it out of my purse to pay for a pack of sanitary pad the other day. I was tempted to ask the price of a less quality brand, but it was just a difference of GHS1. I say just GHS1 because of my pocket but I know GHS1 is huge money for many of my sisters and mothers less privileged than I am.
I don't know how to express my emotions at the soaring price of sanitary pads. I have mixed emotions of anger, sadness and frustration.
If I from a somewhat average home is complaining and bitter, only God knows how the poor lady or girl in that village is feeling. The big question is, how did we get here, when did having our natural monthly menstrual cycle become a luxury?
We all thought the era of using towels, rugs and other unhygienic materials was a thing of the past, which is why it is jaw dropping to read a report on a research conducted by the Upper West regional youth parliament that 83% of adolescent girls sleep with men for money to buy their basic needs including sanitary pads. Such is the case in other regions as well.
Per my checks, the government presently charges a luxury tax of 20% and an additional 12.5% VAT on sanitary pads. Can our sisters, aunties and mothers in our rural communities keep up? I’m asking beautiful Rebecca.
Like an open secret, we all know what’s going to happen. My major concern is the young girl whose education is going to be affected one way or the other through no fault of hers because of sanitary pads.
Beautiful Rebecca, why can’t we be like the other African countries – Kenya, South Africa, Namibia among others that recently eliminated their Tampon Tax.
We are not asking for a magical turn around of our current economic situation, we are simply asking for a bit of respite in these crucial times.
As the mother of the nation, this is a subtle petition to you to join the voice of the masses in advocating the abolishment of these taxes.
Kindly use your high office as First Lady to champion this course.
I, Nasaria Abdul Rahman, a broadcast journalist, speak on behalf of all the concerned young women in Ghana.
We are bleeding!