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An African woman's response to "reproductive rights" debate in Parliament

15 May 2018

 
Uju speaking at the SPUC 2017 National Conference. 

Abortion is "incompatible with our culture" 

Obianuju Ekeocha, the founder of Culture of Life Africa, has written an open letter to MPs ahead of a Westminster Hall debate tomorrow on "Access to reproductive rights around the world".

In the letter, sent by SPUC, Ms Ekeocha, author of Target Africa, takes issue with the premise of the debate being sponsored by Stella Creasy, Labour MP for Walthamstow, saying it confirms the reality that the UK has become a "lead neocolonial master."

Reproductive rights?

In the letter, Ms Ekeocha explains that although her country, Nigeria, is now independent of British colonial rule, "in recent years, we are noticing the footprints of the United Kingdom all over Africa as they have become one of the most enthusiastic western proponents of so-called 'reproductive rights', a concept that is seen and understood all across Africa as abortion, contraception, sterilisation and graphic (age-inappropriate) sexuality education."

Funding illegal abortion

She points out that about 80 per cent of the African countries have continued to resist and reject the notion that abortion should be legal, and that it is "an idea that is incompatible with our culture which teaches us that every human being carries bloodlines of clans and families that are never to be forgotten and that our lives begin right from our mothers’ womb."

We find "organizations like Marie Stopes International, International Planned Parenthood Federation and IPAS...running expensive lobbying campaigns at our parliaments to legalize abortion even against the will of the people," she continues. "And when we investigate, we find out that some of these organizations are performing illegal abortions in African countries where abortion is not legal."

Ideological neocolonialism

Ms Ekeocha also slams the pushing of contraception by western donors, and of sex education in schools that "that does not respect African cultural values and sexual mores."

"Make no mistake, Africa’s western donors have begun a new kind of colonialism - an ideological neocolonialism," she says. "And the UK has emerged as the lead neocolonial master."

Unborn babies are 'onyinyechi'- a precious gift from God

Ms Ekeocha concludes with a plea to the MPs taking part in the debate. "Please do not discuss us like we are fallow lands ready to be claimed and cultivated with pre-conceived ideas and ideologies. Please do not treat us like we are cultural vacuums to be filled with your vision of the world.

"The truth is that this debate will in fact be pushing for the UK to continue or even increase their ideological choke-hold on African countries that are slow or resistant to what the western countries are pushing as 'reproductive rights'.

"My plea to you today, as an African woman, is to stop, climb down from the high grounds of the House of Commons, go into African households, villages, small towns and cities and listen to the people that you are discussing, learn their cultures, know their values, and understand why they see the human life of every one of their babies in the womb as 'onyinyechi'- a precious gift from God."

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