Nana Kwaku Kumi I, the Sanaahene for Agona Duakwa and philanthropist, has emphasised the importance of the government removing all taxes on sanitary products immediately.
When menstruating, some young girls use unconventional materials such as rags and plantain stems, cassava leaves, cement paper, and toilet rolls, according to the queenmother.
She stressed the importance of young girls using sanitary towels when menstruating to avoid infection.
Her wish was for a policy that would make sanitary towels more affordable, as some of them had to save money from their meagre feeding fees to purchase sanitary towels.
The female traditional ruler stated that the majority of teenage girls in the region’s Agona East District have difficulty purchasing sanitary towels due to their high cost.
She claims that their dresses are always stained with blood, forcing them to isolate themselves from their peers and the boys in their class, who mock them.
Some students revealed that they are forced to use toilet paper and other unconventional methods when menstruating and that they are sometimes mocked by their peers.
She was speaking at a menstrual hygiene awareness event for young girls and other stakeholders.
She was also concerned that some men exploit young girls by having sex with them in exchange for sanitary pads.
The situation she described has resulted in an increase in teen pregnancy.
In response to the issue, the traditional leader stated, ”It has become so expensive for young girls and adults to menstruate. They are now forced to use unsanitary methods of menstruation. Some schools do not even have facilities to assist girls in caring for themselves during menstruation. When menstruating, we do not use cement paper, cassava leaves, rags, or plantain leaves. We make use of sanitary pads. However, purchasing the pads has become prohibitively expensive. Some parents cannot afford to buy pads for their children. I am pleading with the government to immediately repeal all sanitary product taxes. Because of the situation, some men have taken advantage of it by sleeping with the young girls and impregnating them in exchange for sanitary pads.”
District Chief Executive for Agona East Janet Odei, for her part, says the Assembly has been supporting public schools in the district with sanitary towels for needy girls and is encouraging parents to do everything they can to provide sanitary towels for their children.
She encouraged parents to do everything they could to provide sanitary pads for their children because they were a necessity.