Clinton Global Initiative and IPAS to Promote Abortion in Africa

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The Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) is partnering with IPAS- which self-describes its mission as "seeks to expand the availability, quality and sustainability of abortion and related reproductive health services, as well as to improve the enabling environment"- to promote "reproductive health education and training" for adolescents in Eastern and Southern Africa. During the recent invitation-only meeting of the fund created by former President Bill Clinton in 2005, an estimated 1,200 heads of state, government officials, executives from Fortune 500 companies, non-profit directors, and others came together for discussion and development of new commitments on a number of issues, including "reproductive health" which includes abortion.

A three year commitment was finalized for IPAS to train and educate thousands of youth in Zambia, Malawi and Kenya, and to reach thousands more in the region through media campaigns on "reproductive health services", including abortion and contraception despite national laws which carefully restrict access to abortion in many of the targeted countries. IPAS President and CEO Elizabeth Maguire states, "IPAS believes that no woman - regardless of her age - should have to risk her life, health or the well-being of her family because she lacks safe reproductive choices." Additionally she explained IPAS' commitment with the Clinton Global Initiative as "Our focus is on facilitating young women's access to counselling, referral and high-quality reproductive health services, especially contraceptive and safe abortion care." The IPAS website lists "safe, legal and affordable abortion services tailored to adolescents' and young women's health care and counselling needs" as one of its action areas for youth.

In addition to the joint commitment on youth, Maguire was a featured speaker on the CGI panel titled "Reproducing Success: Game-changing Interventions in Women's Health" where she spoke of abortion as a "game-changer" for women. According to Maguire, "Comprehensive abortion care is a game-changing intervention for women. Implemented by governments and NGOs in every region of the world, it enables women to prevent - and manage safely - unwanted pregnancy and determine their reproductive futures."

Maguire highlighted IPAS' work in providing abortion in Nepal, where the organization has been actively working with the Ministry of Health to expand access to abortion since the legalization of abortion in 2002. The IPAS president boasted of its work to train health care workers in abortion, "Over 1,200 health-care providers have been trained in both public and private facilities, and nearly 700,000 Nepali women have received safe, legal abortion and contraceptive services." Maguire concludes, "Nepal is just one example where CAC [comprehensive abortion care] has been a major game-changer."

PNCI laments that IPAS and the Clinton Global Initiative fail to recognize that abortion is not a game for the countless children whose lives were, and continue to be, lost through the violence of abortion and for their mothers who regret their abortions. 

Marie Smith, 1 October 2011, Parliamentary Network for Critical Issues, www.PNCIUS.org

Laws on Abortion in Zambia, Malawi and Kenya

Zambia's Termination of Pregnancy (TOP) Act, adopted in 1972, permits abortion to if the mother's life is in danger, of if her physical or mental health is believed to be in danger (a major deception as abortion has many potential physical and psychological consequences for the mother), and in cases of the pre-born baby being deformed.

Malawian law prohibits abortion - Section 149 of the country's penal code says any person who administers abortion shall be liable to imprisonment for 14 years, while Section 150 indicates that any woman who solicits abortion is liable to seven years imprisonment.

Voters in Kenya approved a new constitution in 2010 which changes the law on abortion "from a life of the mother only exception as determined by two medical doctors" to allow "health" or life exceptions as determined by a single undefined "trained health professional". The new constitution was supported by 67 percent of the 8.6 million voters despite overwhelming public opposition to abortion. Christian churches conducted educational outreach to voters urging a "No" vote against the extremely well-funded government effort in support of the constitution, including $23 million from the US and additional funds from other donor countries and the EU.

What You Can Do - A Call to Pastors in Zambia, Malawi and Kenya

Africa Christian Action calls upon pastors and missionaries in Zambia, Malawi and Kenya especially members of the Christian Action Network to mobilise their congregations or ministries to prayer and action to resist any attempts by the UN or IPAS to pressure African nations to legalise abortion, or to deceive Africans through their media campaigns or "outreaches" to youth.

We must heed these ominous early warning signals and show the governments and the people of Africa that life begins at conception and abortion is murder. Churches must mobilise a groundswell of opposition to any attempts to legalise abortion. We call on pro-life groups and congregations throughout Africa to present Biblical, scientific and legal evidence that supports the protection of pre-born babies to their elected representatives and parliamentary committees. Pastors need to be educating their congregations through Bible studies on the sanctity of life. Churches must also provide counseling and support to mothers facing crisis pregnancies.

We encourage you to, write to or phone, Members of Parliament in your country. Zambians can appeal to the Christian Constitution of Zambia. You can also write Letters to the Editor of local newspapers.

"Rescue those who are being led away to death; hold back those staggering towards slaughter." Proverbs 24:11

"Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves." Proverbs 31:8

Click here for pro-life sermons, Powerpoints, leaflets, articles, and a resource list of DVDs, literature and posters to mobilise your congregation in the Fight for Life.

Christian Action P.O.Box 23632 Claremont 7735 Cape Town South Africa info@christianaction.org.za - 021-689-4481 - www.christianaction.org.za
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