Black Looks - Including an African LGBTIQ+ Archive

Gender Violence, Health

Back street abortion in Africa

A survey by the Ministry of Health in Gabon has found that 1 in 4 pregnant women die from Illegal backstreet abortions. Another survey found that teenage girls accounted for 27% of the total. According to IRIN News 4 million unsafe abortions occur every year.  In Gabon and in Kenya, there has been cases of foetuses being found dumped in rubbish bins and  by the side of the road.

Thousands of other women survive, but many are left with injuries and disabilities such as uterine perforation, chronic pelvic pain and secondary infertility, the surveys said

Nearly half the 70,000 global deaths due to unsafe abortions occur in Africa. Three probable reasons – the young age of most of the girls, poverty, the restrictive abortion laws in many African countries, the powerful Christian church in Africa and patriarchy.  In many countries even in cases of rape and insist, abortion is illegal.  The African church is particularly strong in it’s opposition.  They have found support from the US which bans US funding to charities which either perform or promote abortion for family planning.


  1. Laura Swope

    Abortion is wrong. The women of Africa should have better protection and should be informed about the procedure and risks.

  2. Danielle

    Abortion is not wrong. Women should have the right to choose what happens to their body, anyways obviously women are going to do it no matter what so we should give them a safe environment to do it.

  3. Maria

    Abortion is not wrong, it gives women a choice to direct their own lives.Women should be made responsible for the choices they make and should be allowed to have options to save their future and save their lives.

    I’ve been looking for safe abortion clinics in Africa, do you know any contacts in Addis? I tried to look for your email but couldn’t find it. I need the information fast, my friend will be alone and would need a support group and a safe clinic. Please, email me if you do know anyone. Time is running out fast. Thank you!

  4. Jackie

    In a place where AIDS causes more than half the deaths, abortion should be legalized. the baby has a large chance of beign HIV infected through their mother. for the first 3 months of pregnancy the “baby” is not even living, it has no nerve system. it is merely a beating heart. if it was taken from the mother, it would not be able to survive. that, by definition, is not even an organism because it has a symbiotic relationship. the fact that Bush is making state and church coincide with each other is rediculous and African women are called whore or are beaten when they tell their HUSBANDS to wear a condom. some women have to sleep with men in order to feed themselves or their children, and men will not have sex with them if they wear a condom. in a continent with so much death and destruction, bringing a child into that world is unthinkable. which is why the Gag Rule is so rediculous.

  5. Amanda

    Abortion is wrong, no matter how you look at it. It’s wrong for the mother, it’s wrong for the baby.
    I have extensively researched the topic of abortion and, believe it or not, many, many, many women still die or suffer horrific injuries even when the abortion was carried out in a legal abortion clinic. Location and supposed medical degrees do not guarantee survival for the mother after the abortion. Then there is the trauma of P.A.S.S. (Post Abortion Stress Syndrome) which most women suffer with for at least 10yrs after the abortion. P.A.S.S. can result in suicide, depression, violence, and numerous mental health problems.
    It is argued that women should have the right to choose what happens to their body..A body part is defined by the common genetic code it shares with the rest of it’s body; the unborn’s genetic code differs entirely from the mother’s. Being “inside something” is not the same as being part of something. A car is not part of a garage because it is parked there. Human beings should not be discriminated against because of their “place of residence.”
    It is also argued that the baby is just tissue…Like toddler and adolescent, the terms embryo and fetus do not refer to non-humans, but humans in a particular stage of development. Fetus is a Latin word meaning “young one” or “little child.” Is stage of development related to a person’s worth? Is a two-year old worth less than a 6-year-old, etc? The newly fertilized egg contains a staggering genetic information, sufficient to control the individual’s growth and development for an entire lifetime. Prior to the earliest first-trimester abortions, the unborn already has every body part she will ever have. At 18 days, after conception, the heart is forming and the eyes start to develop. By 30 days, she has multiplied in size ten thousand times. She has a brain and blood flows through her veins. By 42 days, the skeleton is formed and the brain is controlling the movement of the muscles and organs. After the first trimester, nothing new develops or begins functioning. The child only grows and matures.

  6. Alicia

    I think that abortion is wrong, and I also think that the people that get abortions are very selfish. Im sorry, but ending a life of an innocent child is not the right thing to do, if you change your mind and dont want to have a child or find out that you wouldnt be able to afford them or raise them give them up for adoption, dont kill an innocent life. Plus there are alot of things that can go wrong and there are alot of things that you can go through after the procedure. I believe that when you find out your pregnant, its a baby. What if your mother was thinking about having an abortion when she was with you? Please do me a favor and think about that……..