Safe Access to Abortion Crucial to Reducing Maternal Mortality in Kenya

Safe Access to Abortion Crucial to Reducing Maternal Mortality in Kenya
First Lady Kenyatta’s “Beyond Zero” Campaign Ignores Key Issue

March 14, 2019
Agnes Odhiambo, Senior Researcher, Women's Rights Division

Five years ago, Kenya’s First Lady, Margaret Kenyatta, launched the “Beyond Zero” campaign to eradicate preventable maternal and child mortality in Kenya. The initiative has drawn support and criticism in equal measure from Kenyans, and it has earned this criticism by ignoring a crucial aspect of women’s health – access to safe abortion.

A charity half marathon last weekend to mobilize resources for the campaign was met with wide-ranging criticism from Kenyans. Activists infiltrated part of the run to stage an anti-corruption protest, arguing that corruption and government failure to prosecute officials implicated in these crimes are the main factors behind Kenya’s failing health sector. Other critics say that the first lady’s campaign is diverting much-needed resources from the public health system.

Continued: https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/03/14/safe-access-abortion-crucial-reducing-maternal-mortality-kenya

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Kenya – Ambiguity in abortion guidelines causing death of women and girl

Ambiguity in abortion guidelines causing death of women and girls

Monday March 11 2019
By EVELYNE OPONDO

The International Women’s Day provides an opportunity to reflect on the progress we have made towards gender equality — and we must as well consider the work that still needs to be done to ensure women and girls can participate with dignity as equal members of society.

Improving maternal health outcomes is an integral component in achieving gender equality. While the maternal mortality rate has declined in Kenya, the risk of women dying from pregnancy complications remains high.

Continued: https://www.nation.co.ke/oped/opinion/Ambiguity-in-abortion-guidelines-causing-death-/440808-5020152-13qcd19/

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Kenyan activist’s death in botched abortion spotlights ‘killer’ backstreet clinics

Kenyan activist's death in botched abortion spotlights 'killer' backstreet clinics

February 15, 2019
Nita Bhalla

NAIROBI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The death of a Kenyan activist due a botched abortion spotlights how thousands of pregnant women and girls are being driven by social stigma and restrictive policies to lose their lives in backstreet clinics, human rights campaigners said on Friday.

Caroline Mwatha disappeared on Feb. 6 in Dandora, a poor neighborhood in Kenya’s capital Nairobi, where she lived and campaigned against the abusive treatment of people in police custody, raising alarm among rights groups.

Continued: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-kenya-women-abortion/kenyan-activists-death-in-botched-abortion-spotlights-killer-backstreet-clinics-idUSKCN1Q42H0

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Kenya – Abortion: Rights group sues ministry, officials over Marie Stopes ban

Abortion: Rights group sues ministry, officials over Marie Stopes ban

Dec. 01, 2018
By LILLIAN MUTAVI

The Centre for Reproductive Rights on Friday sued the Ministry of Health and other state officials over the recent ban on Marie Stopes over safe abortions.

The lobby group filed a suit against the CS for Health, the Director of Medical Services, the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board, the Kenya Film and Classification Board and its CEO Ezekiel Mutua.

Continued: https://www.the-star.co.ke/news/2018/12/01/abortion-rights-group-sues-ministry-officials-over-marie-stopes-ban_c1859353

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Campaigners in Kenya challenge Marie Stopes abortion ban in court

Campaigners in Kenya challenge Marie Stopes abortion ban in court

30 November 2018
By Nita Bhalla, Thomson Reuters Foundation

NAIROBI - A human rights group on Friday challenged the Kenyan government in court over banning international charity Marie Stopes from providing abortion services, saying the move would drive thousands of women and girls to backstreet clinics.

Kenyan authorities directed Marie Stopes to suspend offering abortions and post-abortion care on Nov. 14, after complaints its media campaign was promoting the termination of unwanted pregnancies - a charge the charity denies.

Continued: https://www.iol.co.za/news/africa/campaigners-in-kenya-challenge-marie-stopes-abortion-ban-in-court-18336919

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Kenya’s high court to decide on safe abortion as teenager dies

Kenya's high court to decide on safe abortion as teenager dies

July 12, 2018
Nita Bhalla

NAIROBI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Kenya’s high court is to decide if the government is responsible for the death of a teenager from a botched backstreet abortion, campaigners said on Thursday, in a case which could see safer abortions for thousands of women in the east African nation.

The girl - known by her initials JMM to protect her identity - was raped in 2014 at the age of 15. On discovering she was pregnant, she had a backstreet abortion that left her with injuries which eventually led to her death last month.

Continued: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-kenya-women-abortion/kenyas-high-court-to-decide-on-safe-abortion-as-teenager-dies-idUSKBN1K22DU

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Teenager at centre of Kenyan court case over botched abortion has died

Teenager at centre of Kenyan court case over botched abortion has died
Family of raped teenager are demanding government reissues guidance on safe terminations after crackdown puts lives at risk

Rebecca Ratcliffe
Tue 10 Jul 2018

A teenager whose botched abortion was at the centre of a high court case in Kenya has died.

The girl, who was raped aged 14 and then left with horrific injuries after a backstreet termination, had been the subject of a controversy over whether the Kenyan government was to blame for her death.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2018/jul/10/high-court-kenya-government-girls-death-after-botched-abortion

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Kenya: Health providers must be protected by the law adequately

Health providers must be protected by the law adequately
By Evelyne Opondo
Published Sat, November 4th 2017

On October 19, the Court of Appeal put an end to Jackson Namunya Tali’s nearly nine years in prison. In the momentous decision, the three-judge bench ruled that mere suspicion, however strong, is not probative of an offence in the criminal justice system.

Tali, a trained nurse who operated a clinic in the outskirts of Nairobi, was arrested in 2009 and accused of assisting a woman procure an unsafe abortion that consequently led to her death. Rather than being charged with the offence of unlawful abortion, he was charged with murder, convicted and imprisoned at the Kamiti Maximum Security Prison.

Continued at source: https://www.standardmedia.co.ke/article/2001259242/health-providers-must-be-protected-by-the-law-adequately

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KENYA- Nurse Jackson Talia acquitted of murdering a woman who died from an unsafe abortion

KENYA- Nurse Jackson Talia acquitted of murdering a woman who died from an unsafe abortion
by International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion
Oct 24, 2017

In July 2009, a pregnant woman came to a primary care health clinic in Gachie, Kiambu County, in severe pain and having been bleeding for eight days from a botched abortion. Mr Tali, a nurse at the clinic, tried to help her but determined that she needed to go to a hospital to receive specialized medical attention. However, the woman died in his car as she was being transferred to a higher level facility that could better handle her complications.

Mr Tali was held in custody at the GK Kamiti Maximum Prison from July 2009 until September 2014, when he was finally brought to trial. At trial, the High Court judge found him guilty of helping the young woman obtain an unsafe abortion and sentenced him to death for murder. Although the government pathologist testified that he was unable to find the cause of death, the Court held that there was direct and circumstantial evidence that the immediate cause of death was bleeding that resulted in anaemia due to interference with the pregnancy.

http://www.safeabortionwomensright.org/kenya-nurse-jackson-talia-cquitted-of-murdering-a-woman-who-died-from-an-unsafe-abortion

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Kenya: Nurse Acquitted in a Pregnancy Complications Case

Nurse Acquitted in a Pregnancy Complications Case

10.19.17 - (PRESS RELEASE) Today the Court of Appeal of Kenya acquitted Jackson Tali, a registered nurse who was arrested and sentenced to death on murder charges.

Mr. Tali, who has been in custody at the G.K Kamiti Maximum Prison since July 2009 was convicted and sentenced to death in September 2014 after a young woman presenting with pregnancy complications at his clinic died in his care. Mr. Tali was represented by the Center for Reproductive Rights.

Continued at source: https://www.reproductiverights.org/press-room/nurse-acquitted-in-a-pregnancy-complications-case

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