A lobby group on Wednesday called for the withdrawal of the VAT Bill “for discriminating against women”.
The Federation of Women Lawyers (Fida-Kenya) termed failure to exempt taxation of sanitary pads as a constitutional violation, adding it would undo gains made towards boosting the girl-child education.
“The proposed taxation of sanitary pads is a blatant violation of girls’ and women’s constitutional entitlement to basic education and the highest attainable standard of reproductive health care,” read part of the Fida statement.
In 2004, a zero-rate import duty on sanitary pads was applied as part of a strategy to get more girls into school without interruption.
“The taxation of sanitary pads will be a key reversal of the very commitment made by President Uhuru Kenyatta in budgetary speech where the government promised to ensure girls attended school throughout the month like boys,” said Fida-Kenya chairperson Ruth Aura.