As women, monthly periods could be a very difficult time. Some women even dread that time of the month so bad. The reason for this isn’t far fetched. Menstruation comes with a lot of baggage.
From cramps to vomiting, nausea, weakness etc, the whole process of menstruation could be very exhausting both physically and psychologically. Perhaps for this reason, the Zambian government decided to give women a day off work when they are on their periods.
Zambian lawmakers have instituted a law that allows women take one day off in a month as holiday during their menstrual cycle. The day which is dubbed ‘mothers day,’ stipulates that women can be absent from work for one day a month without providing any medical justification. To emphasise how serious the law is, any employer who denies female employees this entitlement is liable for prosecution.
The law is however a bit controversial as it didn’t go down well with all the citizens.
A supporter of the law, Ndekela Mazimba, who spoke with BBC, said:“I think it’s a good law because women go through a lot when they are on their menses (periods). You might find that on the first day of your menses, you’ll have stomach cramps, really bad stomach cramps. You can take whatever painkillers but end up in bed the whole day. And sometimes, you find that someone is irritable before her menses start, but as they progress, it gets better. So, in my case, it’s just the first day to help when the symptoms are really bad”
Some Zambians are against it and they see it as unnecessary. For instance, Mutinta Musokotwane-Chikopela, a married mother of 3 says:
“I don’t believe in it and I don’t take it. Menses are a normal thing in a woman’s body, it’s like being pregnant or childbirth. I think women take advantage of that, especially that there’s no way of proving that you are on your menses or not. The problem in Zambia is that we have too many holidays, including a holiday for national prayers. So I guess Mother’s Day makes those that love holidays happy.”
This just simply implies that women in Zambia do not need to make prior arrangements to be absent from work, but can simply call in on the day to say they are taking Mother’s Day. This law is however good and bad. Some say there are already too many holidays in Zambia and this one is uncalled for while others believe it is a great development.
Either ways, one could only hope that this holiday isn’t abused by the women.’
What do you think? Would you want this type of law in your country as well? Please share your thoughts in our comment box