Bishops in Liberia Caution Catholic Lawmakers against “inaction” to Oppose Abortion

Credit: CitizenGo Africa

Members of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Liberia (CABICOL) are cautioning Catholic legislatures in the West African nation against silence and “inaction” to the attempts to legalize in the country. 

Senators in Liberia are debating on the Public Health Bill, which has clauses that legalize abortion for up to 12 weeks of pregnancy.

In a statement shared with ACI Africa Wednesday, August 30, the Catholic Bishops express their “grave concern and strong opposition to the Public Health Bill.”

Focusing their attention to legislatures who profess the Catholic faith, CABICOL members want them to be at the forefront to amend the Bill so that the right to life is respected. 

“We remind our Catholic lawmakers that they have a grave and clear obligation to oppose any law that attacks human life, as intentionally stated in the abortion section of the Public Health Bill. Besides, every Catholic is morally bound in conscience to defend the basic right to life from conception to natural death,” they say.


The members of CABICOL add, “We therefore call on each Catholic lawmaker to reflect on their spiritual well-being and the grave consequences of their inaction to defend innocent human life.”

Addressing themselves to President George Weah-led government and all legislators, Liberia’s Catholic Bishops call for the removal of “this section in the Bill that would lead to the international murder of innocent and defenseless lives in Liberia through abortion.”

“The commandment of God is unequivocal: Thou Shall Not Kill,” they further say, making reference to Exodus 20:13.

CABICOL members say that lawmakers have a duty to promote the common good and to protect the society’s vulnerable persons, including unborn children who will lose their lives if the pro-abortion section in the Public Health Bill is retained. 

Liberia’s Penal Code allows abortion only in cases of fetal abnormality, rape, incest, and if the pregnancy is a danger to the mother’s life. In cases of rape and incest, proof must be provided in court while medical exemptions need written approval from at least two medical doctors. 

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Senator Augustine Chea, the Bill’s initiator, said he proposed the law to parliament after realizing large numbers of illegal abortions.

“We have discovered that because it is difficult to get the two doctors’ consent before an abortion is performed, a lot of women have performed illegal abortions which had subsequently led to their death,” Senator Chea has been quoted as saying.

He reportedly added, “Young girls between 15-25 years are dying every day because they cannot get to doctors or the Minister of Health to approve. This is what prompted the decision for the bill to be introduced.”

In their statement, Catholic Bishops in Liberia say that instead of legalizing abortion, “women should be offered real support when facing crisis.”

“We call on our lawmakers to address the root causes that lead to women seeking abortion by providing better support and social protection for women who are pregnant. We believe that these are the true solutions that will uphold the dignity and rights of both mother and the child,” they say. 


Members of CitizenGo, a Catholic activist organization, have launched a campaign to stop the legalization of abortion in Liberia.  

The activists have appealed for signatures to stop the proposed law, saying, “This Bill can be stopped. Please visit now to use the free easy tool to send a message to senators asking them to vote against the bill."

Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.