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Ritah Anindo: One life lost to unsafe abortion is way too many

Stakeholders must work together to promote an enabling social and legal environment to ensure that women can access lifesaving Sexual Reproductive Health services.

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RHNK Network provider giving community women information on safe reproductive healthcare.PHOTO/Courtesy.
“If I knew where to access safe services, a life would have been saved,” Mercy says.
On 30th November, Mercy heard screams from her neighbor’s place, Cate.
On a normal occasion, it would be her husband physically abusing her but for this day, the screams were different.
She found her oozing blood; her eyes were red. Cate was rushed to a local dispensary where it was discovered she had procured an unsafe abortion.
She was then referred to one of the public facilities in Nairobi but unfortunately, she died before being attended by a doctor.
Cate’s story represents the realities of most women in Kenya who experience silent deaths and complications from unsafe abortions.
According to a study conducted in 2012 by the Ministry of Health in Kenya, nearly 465,000 induced abortions occurred in that year and nearly 120,000 women received care for complications from induced abortions.
Additionally, an estimated 2,600 Kenyan women die from unsafe abortions annually.
Mercy says when Cates’s husband heard of her death, he kept on lamenting of how Cate had embarrassed him.
Not forgetting when Cate had started experiencing symptoms, he delayed her from visiting a medical facility on time.
Third party authorization including parental and partner consent increases women’s vulnerabilities to Gender-Based Violence and is one of the greatest barriers hindering women and girls from realizing their sexual reproductive health and rights.
Health experts say there could be very high numbers of women who die from unsafe abortion and its complications.
Most of these deaths go unreported because of the stigma and shame associated with abortion.
These deaths and injuries are violation against human rights.Deaths and complications from unsafe abortions is relentlessly magnifying the consequence of inequalities in the healthcare space.
Although Kenya has a progressive constitution that provides for access to abortion as a right, in the opinion of a provider and in case the health of the mother is in danger; the penal code and the constitution are not aligned therefore fueling harassments and stigma for both healthcare providers and women and girls seeking safe abortion services.
In 2019, a landmark ruling presided over by a five-judge bench at the High Court was made to reinstate Standards and Guidelines for Reducing Morbidity and Mortality from Unsafe Abortion in Kenya.
In 2022, women and girls are not able to access safe and legal abortion as stipulated. Women’s lives matters, deaths and complications from unsafe abortions are preventable. The government should uphold its global commitments and clarify legal grounds for abortion.
The government should also strengthen implantation of existing laws, policies and guidelines.
Stakeholders must work together to promote an enabling social and legal environment to ensure that women can access lifesaving Sexual Reproductive Health services.
Community members should be informed of the availability of these services through community dialogues and awareness campaign.
This article was generated by Ritah Anindo Obonyo~the Youth Project Coordinator at Reproductive Health Network Kenya.

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Uhuru Gardens ready for Madaraka Day fete, says PS Kibicho

The principal secretary said they would be visiting the gardens every Thursday until June 1 to ensure all loose ends are tied up properly, promising that the celebrations will be very colourful.

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Madaraka Day

This year’s national Madaraka Day celebrations at Uhuru Gardens in Nairobi County will be open to 30,000 people, up from 10,000 in 2021.

Permanent Secretary in the State Department for Interior, Dr Karanja Kibicho, said this follows the relaxation of COVID-19 containment measures.

“Children will also be allowed in on the celebrations this year, and we expect county celebrations to happen too,” the PS said while on an inspection tour of the venue.

The PS said the government decided to move the celebrations from the County rotational back to Nairobi because it will be the last event for the current administration before it exits office.

“Because of the significance of this particular Madaraka day, being the last for this regime, we decided to celebrate it at Uhuru Gardens to break the tradition of celebrating it in counties,”

He revealed that preparations were currently at 90 percent complete and expressed confidence that all will be set for the event as the country marks 59 years of self rule.

The principal secretary said they would be visiting the gardens every Thursday until June 1 to ensure all loose ends are tied up properly, promising that the celebrations will be very colourful.

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Queen Elizabeth mourns Kibaki as a great Statesman with commendable legacy

Kibaki will be buried at his home in Othaya, Nyeri County on Saturday.

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Queen Elizabeth II has mourned former President the late Mwai Kibaki eulogizing him as “a great statesman”.

“I was sorry to receive the news of the death of Mwai Kibaki. He had a lifelong record of service to the Kenyan people. It will be of deep sadness to your country to have lost a great statesman, but Kenya can take pride in the legacy of his leadership. I send you and the people of Kenya my condolences at this loss,” the message read.

The British High Commission further affirmed its close ties to Kenya and renewed its assurances to the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“The British High Commission avails itself of this opportunity to renew to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kenya the assurances of its highest consideration,” the High Commission said.

The late Kibaki passed away on 21 April 2022, aged 90.

President Uhuru, who issued a proclamation that he would be granted a state funeral with full civilian and military honours, announced his death.

Kibaki will be buried at his home in Othaya, Nyeri County on Saturday.

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Safaricom partners with Zeraki Learning for Digital Learning platform

This digital platform seeks to provide topic-by-topic assessments and powerful metrics to help students diagnose their weaknesses and track their progress.

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Safaricom Technology for Development, Senior Manager,l Benjamin Makai,Zeraki learning Chief Operations officer Erick Oude and Safaricom Product Manager Kennedy Kahura together test the newly launched video learning app on tablet during the launch of the Zeraki learning digital platform at Kenya Institute of Curriculum development.PHOTO/Courtesy.

Safaricom (NSE: SCOM) has partnered with Zeraki Learning to enable secondary school learners access affordable education services from well trained teachers and informative video lessons.

This digital platform seeks to provide topic-by-topic assessments and powerful metrics to help students diagnose their weaknesses and track their progress.

“Our investments in education, both from a solutions and philanthropic perspective, are geared towards addressing current gaps and boost youth employability. Through the partnership with Zeraki Learning we want to ensure that the platform makes digital education accessible and affordable. For parents, Zeraki gives them access to their child’s academic record which they can use to support their decisions”, said Peter Ndegwa, CEO, Safaricom.

Safaricom has added a touchpoint within MySafaricom App which will enable parents and guardians to subscribe for the service for as low as KES 20 a day. The amount can be deducted from customers’ airtime/postpaid bill or via M-PESA

“We are glad to be able to extend our services to Safaricom customers in a bid to make learning accessible to students from all backgrounds. By leveraging on Safaricom’s technology and platform and pairing it with our services, we will provide a solution that we hope will have a positive impact in Kenya,” said Isaac Nyangolo, CEO, Zeraki Learning.

Zeraki analytics offers the latest system of compiling and analyzing students’ data by providing an interface for results analysis, marks entry, and bulk messaging to parents. For the teachers, Zeraki analytics results gives them a new and easy way to analyze and visualize exam results.

The platform is available in the education section of MySafaricom App under the discover tab and on www.safaricom.com/elimu

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