Regional News of Thursday, 7 April 2011

Source: GNA

New Juaben SHS students educated on abortion rights

Koforidua, April 07, GNA - Students from Senior High Schools in the New Juaben Municipality were on Wednesday educated on their legal rights to go for safe abortion in case they carried unwanted pregnancies at a seminar in Koforidua.

The seminar, which was organized by Golden Mothers Vision International (GMVI), a non-governmental organization, and sponsored by IPAS-Ghana, was aimed at enlightening students, especially the teenagers, about their right to safe abortion care. The programme was on the theme, 93Does the Ghanaian Woman have the Right to Safe Abortion?"

Mrs Esther Mensah Mandela, a Senior Nurse at the Koforidua Regional Hospital, said many women in the country died or sustained injuries through unsafe abortions every year. She said the good news, however, was that, there was an abortion law which allows a woman to have safe abortion under certain conditions.

"The conditions are rape, mental health reasons and issues of incest or where a girl below age 18 gets pregnant." She said a rape victim had the right to go for safe abortion, a girl below the age of 18 or 16 could have safe abortion 93when her parent, elder brother or sister or any trusted adult gives permission to a health provider on her behalf." Ms Mandela advised the students not to resort to concoctions when they get pregnant saying that would seriously endanger their lives. She told the students that safe abortion could only be done in government hospitals, registered private hospitals, registered clinics or any other place that is registered under the Private Hospitals and Maternity Act, 1958. Professor A.K. Frimpong-Mansoh, a Specialist in First Aid, cautioned the students to stay safe so as not to put their lives at risk.

"Stay safe, keep safe and save your lives. Do not engage in illicit sex," he said. Mrs Natasha Aggrey, the Chief Executive Officer of GMVI, said the organization was established to help single teenage mothers, support needy children, educate the Ghanaian youth on their reproductive and health issues and to ensure community development. She said the NGO's main vision was to reduce maternal mortality by ensuring that young women would go for safe abortion care instead of using dangerous abortion methods. 07 April 11