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Hanekom repeats calls for free sanitary pads for girls & young women

The Tourism Minister made the call during a youth summit in Parliament to mark the centenary year of struggle icons Nelson Mandela and Albertina Sisulu.

Minister Derek Hanekom. Picture: 702.

CAPE TOWN – African National Congress (ANC) heavyweight Derek Hanekom has repeated calls for a free supply of sanitary pads for girls and young women.

The Tourism Minister made the call during a youth summit in Parliament to mark the centenary year of struggle icons Nelson Mandela and Albertina Sisulu.

More than 300 youngsters from across the country have descended on the national legislature for the next two days to discuss a variety of issues affecting young people.

It has been seven years since former President Jacob Zuma promised free sanitary pads for women and girls.

With the exception of KwaZulu-Natal, not much progress has been made in other provinces in this regard.

But Hanekom says the time has now come to finally implement the initiative.

“Seeing it as not something that people buy, but something as a right in the same way as education is a right. This is a reality that faces every young girl who’s an important learner and we know during the period of menstruation, it really affects the learning ability of girls in many schools.”

The Youth Summit, organised by Parliament in partnership with the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund, will culminate with a visit to Robben Island on Thursday.

(Edited by Thapelo Lekabe)