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Madina MP introduces bill to remove 15% tax on sanitary pad

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A private member’s bill proposing an amendment to remove the 15 per cent Value Added Tax (VAT) on menstrual hygiene products has been sent to Parliament.

This was after he filed a Private Member’s Bill to remove the 15% Value Added Tax (VAT) on sanitary pads on Thursday, September 21, 2023.

“I have introduced a Private Member’s Bill to remove the 15% Value Added Tax (VAT) on sanitary pads as part of my efforts to fight inequality and discrimination against women and young girls,” he announced in a Facebook post on Monday.

The move follows the successful criminalization of the declaration, accusation, naming or labelling of another person as a witch in the country thanks to the Sosu who is also a human rights lawyer.

In June the Speaker of Parliament, Rt Hon Alban Bagbin condemned the imposition of taxes on sanitary pads as a “cardinal sin” following a protest and a petition to Parliament by a group of Civil Society Organisations (CSO) in the country seeking the removal of VAT and other taxes on the importation of sanitary pads.

“Why should we, as a House, impose a law passing a tax on sanitary pads? This is unconscionable. It’s a cardinal sin. The House shouldn’t have allowed it at all. This House shouldn’t have allowed it. {Do} you know the impact of that law on the human resource development and the development of the country? It is immeasurable,” he chastised the House.

According to the National Coordinator for Platform on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Ms Levlyn Asiedu Konadu, the Government of Ghana, under the Harmonised System Code 9619001000, classifies sanitary pads as Miscellaneous Manufactured Articles which attract a myriad of taxes including a 20 per cent import duty, a 15 per cent Import VAT and other import levies.

These, she observes, are contributing to period poverty in the country as underprivileged women and girls are unable to afford the product.

Hon Sosu’s proposed bill seeks to amend the VAT (Amendment) Act, 2022 (Act 1082) to remove the VAT on sanitary pads and tampons as well as push for the reclassification of the 20 per cent import tax on final consumer goods to zero-rated essential social goods and proscribe future taxation of such essential social goods, Graphic reports.

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