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Pro-Life Groups in Kenya Renew Commitment against Proposed Reproductive Health Care Bill

Some Pro-life members at a previous March in Kenya's capital Nairobi.

Some 26 pro-life groups in Kenya have, in a collective statement, renewed their opposition to the Reproductive Health Care Bill (2019) that is currently in the Senate.

In their Monday, August 17 statement shared with ACI Africa, the groups ask Kenyan Senators to withdraw the proposed law “entirely without amendments” and to “have it shelved completely.”

“Pro-life groups in Kenya have submitted their memoranda to the Senate Committee on Health following the fresh call for public participation on the proposed law, re-iterating their non-negotiable stance to have the controversial Reproductive Health Care Bill of 2019 withdrawn entirely without amendments,” the 26 pro-life groups in Kenya state.

Signed by the leadership of various groups including the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB), Catholic Members of Parliament in Kenya, Kenya Christian Professionals Forum (KCPF), CitizenGO, Evangelical Alliance of Kenya (EAK), Kenya Catholic Doctors Association and Franciscan Friars Kenya, among others, the groups call on the Senate Committee on Health to “listen to the many voices who have opposed the bill and have it shelved completely.” 

Catholic Bishops in the East African country have spearheaded the campaign against the proposed law. 

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In June, KCCB members explained their opposition to the Bill in a letter to Catholic Members of Parliament (MPs) and all Legislators of good-will. 

“It goes against the teaching of the Gospel. It is a Bill against the Constitution, against the right to life and against the protection of children and of the family,” Catholic Bishops in Kenya said in their June 23 statement. 

In July, members of KCCB reached out to “Christians and people of goodwill to stand up and defend the family unity, the dignity of our children, the religious and positive cultural values of our people and our identity as Kenyans.” 

Representatives of different pro-life groups in Kenya say, in their August 17 statement, that the Bill is advocating for “illegalities and practices that are not acceptable in our country as it will make legal abortion on demand in the country contrary to the spirit of our Constitution of 2010 and the Penal Code.” 

“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,” they say and continue, “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.”

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On the controversial Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE), the pro-life groups say that the proposed law “is aimed at legalizing CSE in the name of adolescent-friendly education.”

They note that the Bill is “pushing for surrogacy without offering a clear framework on how this can be practiced 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,” they add, expressing their readiness “to help in championing and steering an all stakeholders forum that will come up with a bill that is acceptable by all.”