Nairobi News

GeneralNews

Pro-life groups want Kihika’s Reproductive Bill withdrawn over abortion concerns


Pro-life groups in Kenya are pushing for the total withdrawal without amendments of the controversial Reproductive HealthCare Bill of 2019 drafted by Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika.

This is captured in a memorandum by the groups to the Senate Committee on Health following the fresh call for public participation on the proposed law.

In the memorandum, the pro-life campaigners argued that the bill is pushing for illegalities and practices that are not acceptable in the country.

“According to article 114 of the CoK 2010, all money bills are supposed to emanate from the National Assembly instead of the Senate. The bill is sponsored and championed by foreign NGOs that have continuously pushed for it online, through media and also through holding workshops with a number of legislators. The outspoken agenda by these non-governmental organizations has been to make abortion legal in the entire of Africa, Kenya being their number one target.” The memoranda read in part.

The 23 groups further claimed that the bill would legalise abortion on demand in the country contrary to the spirit of our constitution of 2010 and the penal code.

The pro-life groups are led by Dr Jean Kagia, founder of Protecting Life Movement Trust, Susan Mbugua, founder of Hope and Restore Center-Kibera, Aketch Aimba who founded Pearls and Treasures Trust and Kiminini MP Chris Wamalwa, who chairs the Catholic Members of Parliament SSI.

In the memoranda, the groups also pointed out that the bill reportedly pushes for surrogacy without offering a clear framework on how this can be practised and without taking into account the negative effects which the practice has, including harm to the best interests of the Child and the spirit of Article 45 of the Constitution.

“The bill leaves loopholes for same-sex unions and related practices, which are currently illegal in the country and are not for the good of the entire society.”

We therefore hereby urge the Senate Committee on Health to listen to the many voices who have opposed the bill and have it shelved completely. The pro-life community in Kenya has offered to help in championing and steering an all stakeholders’ forum that will come up with a bill that is acceptable by all.”

Faith-based groups and pro-life activists have taken issue with Clause 26, which outlines instances in which abortion should be allowed under the supervision of a medical doctor even as Senator Kihika has strongly defended her bill.

“The Bill has 37 clauses and only one — clause 26, addresses termination of pregnancy, which by the way is already the law of the land under Article 26 of the Constitution that allows exceptions to the right to life when in the opinion of a trained health professional there is need for emergency treatment or the life or health of the mother is in danger,” Ms Kihika explained to Sunday Nation on July 12, 2020.