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Group seeks review of abortion laws to give women choices

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AN INTERNATIONAL Non-Governmental Organisation, Ipas has called for review of existing laws on Women Sexual Reproductive Health Rights (WSRHR), in Nigeria.

  “With over 28 million cases of abortion reported annually in the country and society generally, there is need for women’s sexual reproductive health and rights.” Ipas said.

 Speaking during media capacity building workshop for journalists, the executive director of the organisation, Hauwa Shekarau said the abortion law should be made more effective to check the rising health of girls from unsafe abortion.

  Shekarau said that Values Verification and Attitude Transformation (VCAT) statistics has become obsolete and incapable of addressing the reproductive health challenges in Nigeria.

  “Religious and society bias against abortion have encouraged our girls and women to undertake wrong choices which had resulted to high, maternal mortality,” she noted.

  According to her, the choice of our girls when they are faced with sexual violence should be looked into.

 Shekarau said that with over 760,000 self-induced abortions annually in the country and more than 140,000 women hospitalised annually for abortion complications, the country should rise and take the right actions.

  In another development, Emma Ugorji while delivering his paper at the workshop said that the training aimed at building the capacity of journalists on women’s sexual reproduction health and right for accurate and unbiased reports.

  “The media is key in determining public opinion on trivial issues facing the people, hence, the essence of the workshop.”

According to him, we want to transform the attitude of the media towards building network of journalists that will be strong advocates of WSRHR in the states.

 “We are looking at getting the commitment of media practitioners to sensitise the public on WSRHR with a view to changing the existing ones.” he noted.

  It was gathered that reviewing the laws has become necessary in order to reduce the negative indices on sexual reproductive health system in Nigeria.

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