That was Just an example to show that abortion has very deep roots in our country not to forget that ost Kenyans stick to their traditions. The new constitution of Kenya adopted in the year 2010 establishes that a pregnant woman or adolescent may choose to have an abortion when in the opinion of a trained health professional, there is need for emergency treatment or her life or health is in danger. This is the only legal excuse of an abortion in Kenya yet numerous cases of unsafe abortions are still being reported in Kenya.
A report from the ministry of health reveals 465,000 women had abortions during the year 2012 with majority of this number having engaged in unsafe conditions despite of the new constitution in place. Dr. Elizabeth Kimani of the African Population and Health Research Center says despite the safety concerns there is resistance in Kenya to addressing the problem thus the reason as to why despite the laws that are put in place the number of women who indulge in unsafe abortion is high in the country.
Unsafe abortion which is the most considered way by many in the country comes with various health hazards and complications to those women who use these methods. According to a report released last year by the Kenya National Commission of Human Rights found unsafe abortions caused up to 0 percent of maternal deaths in Kenya. It is said some of the methods women were using to terminate pregnancies included taking traditional herbs or high doses of anti-malarial medication.
Another report by The Kenya Human Rights Commission on teenage pregnancy and unsafe abortions also shows that perforation of the cervix by an object to induce premature labor was the most common type of abortion. These unsafe methods usually result to problems for example perforation of the cervix by an object can damage the cervix not only temporarily but also permanently, it can lso lead to barrenness. There is also being arrested for breaking the law and being charged with murder which leads to imprisonment. Excessive bleeding can also lead to death of the person undertaking the abortion.
A psychological trauma is also another effect resulting from an unsafe abortion although not many people seem to realize it even when they are suffering from this problem and when informed of this problem most of them are usually in denial. Damage to the genital tract and infections. It is surprising how majority of the women who undergo abortion rely on he unsafe methods of abortion but as the saying goes there are two sides to every story’ and so does unsafe abortion. Some engage in unsafe practice due to stigma in the society on abortion.
Majority of Kenyans are against abortion due to various reasons like religion . Most religions view abortion as killing even if it is done to save a life. Hence most women fear being condemned by friends and family due to this issue. There is also stigma by health protessionals on abortion. This is where by those who are professionally trained medically usually instead of helping their atients who are in need of professional help in abortion they tend to condemn and discriminate on these patients thus discouraging them and making them feel hated and lose a sense of direction hence making poor choices.
Another reason is the lack of a national communication strategy on safe abortion hence most people especially those living in the rural areas who still cling to traditions and are still using traditional herbs and other crude methods in abortion, are unaware that there are safer and more professional ways of conducting abortion and also that abortion without a probable cause is illegal in Kenya. There is also the fact that most women tend to seek the cheaper way out because according to The Kenya Human Rights Commission report on teenage pregnancy and unsafe abortion, abortion can cost as low as one hundred and fifty Kenya shillings.
This is mainly due to poverty since most of the unwanted pregnancies occur in slums according to the same report not knowing that cheap is expensive i. e. these unsafe methods can cost them dearly. Some women indulge in unsafe abortion unknowingly i. e. some of the people who carry out these abortions are in it for the money since they see it as a way of making uick cash and they are not properly qualified as they claim to be. Some of them know nothing about medication let alone abortion.
They Just take advantage of the gullible women who may never realize it unless they incur injury and visit a professional. A report by Henry Kibira on The Star newspaper on the 27th of August 2013 shows that currently Kenya’s rate of abortion is higher than almost every country in Africa yet the country boasts of developing at an alarming rate. Kenya’s abortion rate according to this report stands at 48 abortions per 1000 women. This oosely translates to 1274 abortions per day and 53 every hour. The areas in Kenya leading in abortion are: 1.
Rift valley with a prevalence of 46,912 2. Nyanza and Western with 45,027 incidences 3. Central and Nairobi with 20,676 4. Eastern and Coast with 16,649 North Eastern recorded the least at 12,169 incidences. 12,169 is considered to be the least according to Henry Kibira’s report but all these figures are still too high and the cases of abortion are still shooting up showing no signs of declining anytime soon. Of the women who indulge themselves in abortion, the highest number are married omen followed by unmarried women and then divorced women.
The greater percentage of unmarried women is still teenagers. It is shocking how a young generation that can improve the countrys future can also be destroyed morally at a tender age. It’s evident that unwanted pregnancies are the roots of unsafe abortions that end up causing permanent injuries and at times taking away life thus the need to embrace contraception as a way of stopping the rate of abortion. Since contraception use is the surest way to prevent unintended pregnancies and thus erasing even the thought of abortion in our Kenyan women.