By John Wanjohi Sun
The controversial Reproductive Health Bill 2019 drafted by Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika has received support from Kenyan atheists.
Atheists in Kenya Society hailed the proposed bill as progressive, saying it will help reduce unwanted pregnancies because it gives Kenyans the power to decide when to have or not have children.
July 12, 2020
Anthony Idowu Ajayi, Meggie Mwoka
Kenya’s Senate is considering a reproductive healthcare bill, which seeks to address reproductive health gaps. This is the second time the bill has come before the senate. It has, once again, drawn fire from religious groups, some politicians and civil society lobbies opposed to its proposals. Anthony Ajayi and Meggie Mwoka unpack the bill and the lessons from previous failed attempts.
What is the substance of the bill?
Kenyan women and girls face an array of reproductive health risks that can be addressed by comprehensive reproductive health care services. These include sexually transmitted infections, HIV, unsafe abortion and unplanned pregnancies.
A problem we'd rather ignore than confront and find solutions to.
by JEDIDAH MAINA
01 July 2020
It is ironic that the moral police in Kenya tend to speak the loudest about
potential dangers rather than actual moral failures. This is evident in the
current conversations around teenage pregnancy and what we need to do to deal
with the problem.
One red hot coal in the debate is Comprehensive Sexuality Education, and
whether it is the solution or just another doorway to more sexual
Menstruation, sex, and abortion do not stop for pandemics
Comprehensive access and uptake of the above care and services will ensure we are not fighting another pandemic post-coronavirus.
by ALVIN MWANGI, Star Blogs
28 May 2020
With the rise in the number of coronavirus infections in the country, the health system risks being over-stretched to levels that the Ministry of Health might not contain.
Health CAS Dr Mercy Mwangangi has said the government is concerned with reports that many Kenyans have stopped going to hospitals for fear of contracting Covid-19. Among the affected services is reproductive health.
Keeping women's health essential despite Covid-19 shortages
Opinion by Anu Kumar
Thu May 7, 2020
(Video: Fear, panic as women navigate pregnancy during a pandemic, 02:59)
(CNN)The world is changing daily as a result of Covid-19. Like millions of people, I now have a virtual workday. I am fortunate -- I'm safe and comfortable at home with my family in North Carolina.
Although living socially distanced and not knowing when life will return to normal is a struggle, I am comforted by the knowledge of the frontline workers I work with around the world working to alleviate some of the harm being inflicted on those living in dense and underserved communities.
The Coronavirus Is Cutting Off Africa’s Abortion Access
The collapse of medical supply chains has been a catastrophe for women in developing countries. Lockdowns have made matters worse.
By Neha Wadekar
May 4, 2020
When Shali Iminza, 27, missed her period in March, the married mother of three felt her stomach sink with dread. Iminza, whose first name has been changed for privacy reasons, works as a farmer in western Kenya, and her husband is a motorcycle taxi driver. Together, they barely make enough money to feed their family. “Sometimes we eat three times [per day], sometimes two,” Iminza told Foreign Policy and Type Investigations over the phone. “Things are very expensive, and to get money nowadays, it’s hard.”
Unable to care for another child, Iminza visited a local health clinic, walking more than 3 miles to save money on the taxi fare. When she arrived, the doctor informed Iminza that the pills she would need to terminate her pregnancy were unavailable because of shortages caused by the novel coronavirus. “I’m very angry because the more the days are going, the pregnancy is now growing, so I don’t know what to do,” said Iminza, her voice trembling from stress.
Kenya split over campaign to give women the right to safe abortions
MP Esther Passaris says lives are being put at risk in a country where 40% of pregnancies are unplanned
Ginger Hervey in Nairobi
Tue 17 Mar 2020
The pills arrived with no instructions. Delivered on a Sunday to Joy’s home in Kayole, an informal settlement in Kenya’s capital Nairobi, by someone she didn’t know.
She had ordered them because she was pregnant, and didn’t want to be. At 19, she said, she couldn’t support a baby, and the father had stopped answering his phone after she told him. Desperate, she had asked an older friend, who said she knew someone who could help.
Deadly secrets and rise of abortion in marriages
A significant number of women who procure abortion for the first time are likely to do it again
By KINUTHIA MBURU
Feb 25, 2020
Evelyn Wambui (not her real name) had her career and family life all planned out. She wanted to have three children and a stable career by the age of 36. Everything had gone according to plan by the time she gave birth to her third born in February 2018. She had a good career as a human resource manager at an insurance firm in Nairobi. She was also married with two children aged eight and five years. Six months after the birth of her third born, Evelyn started taking birth control pills. “Pills were my most favourable option at the time. I was not ready to use an intrauterine coil. I had also ruled out the Jadelle levonorgestrel implant because of previous heavy menses and constant spotting,” she says.
Having taken her pills faithfully, Evelyn was shocked when she started to miss her periods last year. It started in August, a year after she started taking the pills. “I was not alarmed at first. I had taken my pills well and there was no way I could have been pregnant,” she says. But she knew something was wrong when she missed her periods for the second month in a row. “I became very anxious. I wanted to take a test, but I was afraid. I decided to wait it out for another month,” she adds.
Lack of info on laws fuels deaths from unsafe abortion
Constitution allows abortion in selected situations–for instance, if mother is in danger
by Daniel Otieno, Star Blogs
20 February 2020
In 2010, Kenya’s Constitution was changed after it was realised that many women were dying due to unsafe abortion while thousands were suffering from complications related to unsafe abortion.
The Constitution permits abortion if, in the opinion of a trained medical provider, the health of the mother is at risk or if a written law–a constitution–permits it.
The global gag rule on abortion and reproductive health care must be repealed
By Ami Bera and Melvine Ouyo, Special to The Sacramento Bee
February 19, 2020
Last month marked three years since President Donald Trump reinstated and expanded the Global Gag Rule, jeopardizing life-saving global health programs and making it even harder for people in developing countries to access crucial reproductive health care – care that we know saves lives.
Under this abhorrent policy, health care providers are barred from receiving desperately-needed financial assistance if they offer abortion-related services or counseling – even if they offer those services with non-U.S. funds.