KUWADZANA legislator Betty Nhambu-Kaseke (Zanu PF) has called on the government to scrap import duty on sanitaryware and raw materials used to manufacture the product to make it more affordable.
BY WINSTONE ANTONIO
She made the remarks at Kuwadzana 2 High last week where she handed over sanitaryware to female students at various secondary schools and colleges in her constituency. The stuff was sourced from Madame Foster Chanita known as Baby Oprah from the United States of America.
“As a woman and mother who understands and knows what the girl child goes through, it is my wish that the government rebates sanitaryware or raw materials so that these girls can afford to buy these pads. If the government can donate it would be better, even to make it a policy that every secondary school have them for free just like condoms found in every public toilet,” she said.
Kaseke said the government should prioritise free distribution of sanitary pads as many young girls are missing school when they menstruate.
“It is a real challenge. Our daughters have resorted to unhygienic means of taking care of themselves during their time. Some are using socks, some are using cloths, which they recycle again and again which expose them to greater infections, so I talked to our partners and they have assisted me with the sanitaryware,” she said.
Nhambu-Kaseke said the gesture was only the beginning, promising to continue assisting the girl child together with her partners.
“As a woman MP most of the times I am in touch with the girl child and I have received a lot of pleas from the girl child where they need support. Among some challenges presented to me by the girl child is an issue of sanitaryware … that is why I have sourced the sanitaryware with the help of Madame Foster Chanita,” she said.
Over the years, there have been several calls by female legislators among them Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Women Affairs and Youth chairperson, Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga on the need to address issues of easy access to sanitaryware.
Recently scores of girls and young women yesterday gathered at Town House in Harare for a march dubbed Happy Flow Campaign aimed at advocating for health and wellness particularly access to sanitary pads.