How Tax exemption for sanitary pads twisted smiles during the 2018 KIJIWE CHA KAHAWA.

By Davice Collins

It is three years now, since TGNP Mtandao established a strategic budget engagement space for CSO’s, Development Partners and the Community members to gather on a Live National Budget hearing called the KIJIWE CHA KAHAWA. From this forum issues around the national budget were assessed and recommended for further advocacy to ensure gender responsiveness carters around the budget to benefit women and the marginalized.

Focusing on the 2018/2019 budget that was presented yesterday at the parliament in Dodoma city by the minister of finance, Dr Philip Mpango, TGNP Mtandao through the Kijiwe cha Kahawa 2018, various issues were of success but most of all was the recommendation of the minister on the removal of the Value Added Tax (VAT) to sanitary pads as part of ensuring healthy and safe menstrual period to women and girls in Tanzania.

From the above recommendation, celebrations raised from CSO, Politicians, Students, community representatives and others who witnessed the announcing. Speaking during the event, TGNP Executive Director, Lilian Liundi commended the government’s effort in ensuring girls are safe and cared during their monthly periods.

“From the ministers announcing, this is a huge result for TGNP Mtandao and other human rights actors since the issue of sanitary pads and menstrual hygiene management has been a cry for a long time. We are glad to see our government addressing issues of women and girls, she says.

Also she added, “Big appreciation goes to the Tanzania Women rights movement in Tanzania for their collective voice demanding issues of menstrual hygiene management to women and girls. Last but not least this is just a step towards our vision that one day that sanitary pads will be freely provided to girls in schools because most of them in the rural areas can’t access or afford the product.

On the same note, the member of parliament representing Urban Kigoma, Hon Zitto Kabwe has congratulated TGNP Mtandao and ther actors for the huge contribution of advocating menstrual hygiene management to girls in schools.

Generally, apart of implementing the industrialized Tanzania, TGNP Mtandao urges both private and public sector to invest in small industries that produces sanitary pads rather than depending the imported products, this will be of help to our economy and the health of our mothers, wives, sisters and daughters.