The Taliban have asked female employees in the country to send a male relative to offices to do the work on their behalf. The announcement came a year after female employees working in the public sector were banned from government jobs and told to stay at home. Several women said that the Taliban officials asked them to send a male relative as their replacement as the “workload in the office has increased and they need to hire a man instead of us”, according to The Guardian. “Current restrictions on women’s employment have been estimated to result in an immediate economic loss of up to $1bn – or up to 5% of Afghanistan’s GDP,” said Executive Director of United Nations Women Sima Bahous. Maryam, who worked at the Afghan ministry of finance for more than 15 years, said: “I was asked to introduce a male family member to replace me at the ministry, so I could be dismissed from the job.” “Since they came [to power], the Taliban have demoted me and reduced my salary from 60,000 Afghanis [£575] to AFN12,000. I cannot even afford my son’s school fees. When I questioned this, an official rudely told me to get out of his office and said that my demotion was not negotiable,” she said.