MONDAY SEPTEMBER 19 2022
By Hellen Nachilongo
No matter how hard she tries, Julie Kaira* cannot stop herself from feeling the overwhelming shame that came as a result of the rape that she endured at the hands of her biological father, in his matrimonial house at that.
Although this took place three decades ago, she still shudders every time she recalls that unfortunate turn of events. Julie, now 42-years-old was raped at the age of 13. She says that it was normal to find her father at home during working days but little did she know that he was capable of being vile enough to rape his own daughter.
BY STEPHANIE MUSHO
SEPTEMBER 7, 2022
For too long, sexual and reproductive rights in Kenya have operated in a vacuum. Despite the constitution providing for the “highest attainable standard” of reproductive health, legislators have failed to enact any legislation on the issue, shooting down a bill in 2014 and another in 2019. The outgoing administration of Uhuru Kenyatta has opposed the delivery of sex education and contraception to adolescent and failed to support teenage mothers.
This has contributed to several worrying statistics. Kenya has the world’s third highest teenage pregnancy rate. Nearly 100 girls in the country contract HIV each week. Over 2,600 women and girls die annually from complications arising from unsafe abortion.
7 SEPTEMBER 2022
By Stephanie Musho
Kenya's sexual health rights are beholden to US decisionmakers. New legislators must take back control.
For too long, sexual and reproductive rights in Kenya have operated in a vacuum. Despite the constitution providing for the "highest attainable standard" of reproductive health, legislators have failed to enact any legislation on the issue, shooting down a bill in 2014 and another in 2019. The outgoing administration of Uhuru Kenyatta has opposed the delivery of sex education and contraception to adolescent and failed to support teenage mothers.
Women have a right to an abortion in South Africa that is protected by the Constitution. Yet of the 3,880 health facilities in South Africa, less than 7% provide access to abortion services, and of the 505 medical facilities specifically designated to provide the service, an estimation of only 197 are currently operational.
By Sibusisiwe Ndlela, Charlemaine Husselmann and Primah Kwagala
21 Aug 2022
Recognition of a right to abortion is often the first step towards creating an enabling environment for women to access abortions but in some countries in east and southern Africa, argue the authors, the outcome of the US case may put brakes on little sparks of hope that emerged in recent years.
The right to abortion has been catapulted into the spotlight by Dobbs v Jackson, the landmark judgment of the United States (US) Supreme Court that overturned Roe v Wade — a 50-year-old precedent of that court that first recognised the constitutional right to abortion in the US.
August 17, 2022
MBALE – When Ms Agatha Negesa [Not her real name] got married, she had her family life planned out well, this is because she did not want to produce too early, too soon, too often, and too late.
She had a plan and target of having three children but also remaining at her workplace stable by the age of 35. Everything went well according to her plan by the time she gave birth to her third born in February 2017.
The US Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the longstanding abortion ruling will have a chilling effect on reproductive healthcare provision in low income and middle income countries.
BMJ 2022; 378
doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.o1844 (Published 11 August 2022)
Sally Howard, freelance journalist1, Geetanjali Krishna, freelance journalist
In 2018 a reproductive health organisation in Kenya found that anti-abortion advocates had put the address of its reproductive rights helpline on social media. “It was a veiled threat,” its programme manager, Mina Mwangi, tells The BMJ. “They wanted us to know that they knew how to get us.”
On 24 June 2022 the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade, the landmark 1973 decision that protected women’s liberty to choose to have an abortion without excessive government restriction.1 Sexual and reproductive health rights organisations across the world, including Mwangi’s, feared the effects of the overturning in terms of funding and potential attacks. “We are heightening our security because of how emboldened the opposition are,” Mwangi says, adding that she dreads a potential withdrawal of funds from US non-governmental organisations: her organisation receives over 50% of its funding from US donors.
By The Nation
On Aug 6, 2022
A non-profit organisation, Ipas Nigeria Health Foundation has identified unsafe abortions as one of the factors contributing high maternal mortality rate in Nigeria.
The organisation said Nigeria is confronted with high incidences of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV), which sometimes results in unwanted pregnancies, leading to unsafe abortions.
July 23, 2022
The Women Rights and Civil Society Organisations have called on the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu to immediately lift suspension on the guidelines on Safe Termination of Pregnancy for legal Indicators.
The Groups maintained that women have rights to their bodily integrity and to life, stressing that the ‘Safe Termination of Pregnancy for legal Indicators’ is meant to save women from preventable death.
June 30, 2022
In Africa, where the risk of dying from an unsafe abortion is the highest in the world, Roe v. Wade has long been an important weapon in the arsenal of those fighting to liberalize abortion laws and make the procedure safer for women and girls despite it rarely being invoked by name.
Human rights lawyer Stephanie Musho, a Kenyan, pointed to the case of Tunisia which liberalized their law limiting abortions just nine months after the Roe v. Wade ruling, allowing women to access the service on demand.
By Lisa Vives, Global Information Network
27 June 2022
NEW YORK (IDN) — In Africa, where the risk of dying from an unsafe abortion is the highest in the world, Roe v Wade has long been an important weapon in the arsenal of those fighting to liberalize abortion laws and make the procedure safer for women and girls despite it rarely being invoked by name.
Human rights lawyer Stephanie Musho, a Kenyan, pointed to the case of Tunisia which liberalized their law limiting abortions just nine months after the Roe v Wade ruling—allowing women to access the service on demand.