Kenya – To reduce maternal deaths, birth control is key

By Spencer Anyango
October 9th 2021

About 800 women die from pregnancy or childbirth complications around the world everyday with nearly all the deaths occuring in developing countries, a recent World Health Organisation (WHO) report indicated.

In Kenya, the maternal mortality rate currently stands at 362 out of every 100,000 live births. 


Abortion stigma a possible death sentence for Kenyan women

Issued on: 01/10/2021

Victoria Atieno was waiting at a Nairobi bus stop when she felt blood gush from her body, the result of a secret, self-induced abortion -- a method used by thousands of Kenyan women, with potentially fatal consequences.

Kenya's constitution eased access to abortions in 2010 but entrenched stigma about the procedure means that many women resort to traditional practices or backstreet clinics which put their life in jeopardy.


Kenya – Implement Constitution to end preventable maternal deaths

By Evelyne Opondo
September 6th 2021

On August 27, the country marked 11 years since the promulgation of the Constitution of Kenya 2010, a supreme order that ushered the promise of reproductive rights autonomy, including abortion care. Unfortunately, women and girls of reproductive age continue to grapple with challenges when accessing essential health services. They face harassment, arbitrary arrests, prosecution and even encounter healthcare providers reluctant to offer services.

These challenges are exacerbated by the government’s lackadaisical approach to bringing sections of the Penal Code, such as the blanket ban on abortion services, into alignment with the Constitution. The ambiguity has compelled licensed healthcare practitioners to shy away from providing abortion and post-abortion care to women and girls, even in emergency situations, for fear of criminal sanctions, despite being allowed by the law.


What Happens When Women Can’t Get Legal Abortions

Examples from around the world show that restrictions can actually lead to more, not fewer, abortions.

By Neha Wadekar, a Nairobi-based journalist.

In a 5-4 decision late Wednesday night, the Supreme Court of the United States refused to block a Texas law banning most abortions after six weeks, which is before many women even know they’re pregnant. Known as Senate Bill 8, the law does not allow exceptions for pregnancies resulting from rape or incest, making it the harshest abortion restriction in the country. The law sets the stage for a battle over the future of Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 Supreme Court decision, which states that the Constitution protects a pregnant woman’s right to choose to have an abortion without excessive government restriction.

Reduced abortion access in the United States could have catastrophic results. In countries around the world with limited or no access to safe, affordable abortion, people are either forced to keep unwanted pregnancies or dismembered or even killed by unsafe abortions each day.


Half a million abortions in Kenya every year, despite ban? Yes – and decade-old estimate still relevant

Most of the 500,000 terminations are unsafe, prompting Ghetto Radio host Maji Maji to ask if abortion should be made legal in Kenya.

Published on 24 August 2021

Radio celebrity Julius Owino, known as Maji Maji, recently made a startling claim to start off a discussion about abortion in Kenya. 

“500,000 abortions hizo uhappen Kenya [happen in Kenya] nationwide, according to statistics,” he said on Ghetto Radio.


Kenya – What is the way forward for Bill on reproductive health services?

Thu, Aug 12 2021

The Reproductive Health Bill, 2019 which proposed to make prenatal, delivery, and postnatal services free for every woman in Kenya was withdrawn earlier this year to allow for more public participation.

The Bill, sponsored by Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika, was gazetted in November 2019 and was first read in Parliament on February 18, 2020.


Kenya – Medical Association Raises Alarm Over Fatalities Linked To Unsafe Abortions

June 17, 2021

KISII, Kenya, Jun 17 – The Kenya Medical Association (KMA) has sounded a warning over rising fatalities linked to unsafe abortions in Kenya.

Speaking during the 48th KMA Annual conference in Kisii, the association’s President Dr Andrew Were said 5,000 maternal deaths related to unsafe abortions were recorded in the country in a year.


Tricked and uninformed: why so many young girls in Kenya are getting pregnant

May 30, 2021
Anthony Idowu Ajayi

The rate of early unintended pregnancy in Kenya is shockingly high. About one in five girls between the ages of 15 and 19 have begun having children. It’s worse in some areas than others. For instance, the rate is as high as two in five in Narok and Homa Bay counties. Most of these pregnancies are unplanned and unintended.

Getting pregnant at such a young age can harm a girl’s health and socioeconomic wellbeing.


Kenya – Comprehensive Sexuality Education Is Vital To All!

MAY 26, 2021 
By Alvin Mwangi, Ghetto Radio

Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen a lot of adolescents and young people remain and stay in homes. It is saddening that everyday we hear of injustices that adolescents and young people in all our diversities are going through in Kenya.

Access and enjoyment to the highest standard of health care is important to all adolescents and young people including the “left behind”, LGBTQ+, persons with disabilities, persons who inject drugs, young people from marginalized areas.


There’s need to sensitise, train healthcare providers on emergency abortion services

May 19, 2021
By Evelyn Odhiambo

African laws largely restrict abortion with only 3 countries; Tunisia, Zambia, and South Africa where abortion is broadly permitted even upon a woman’s request.

In many African countries, abortion is restricted with a provision like: when the life of the mother is in danger or case of an emergency. Kenya is among the many African countries where abortion restricted under article 26 (4) of the 2010 constitution.