A public university located in Narok County has sent a stern warning to its students against procuring abortion while still in the campus.
The management cautioned students against committing criminal offence under the Kenyan law.
Through an internal memo that was addressed to the vice chancellor, deputy vice chancellor, , dean of student, Maasai Mara University signaled students against indulging into the practice failure to which the police will be involved.
“Any student found or reported to have procured an abortion or in the process of carrying an abortion shall be handled over to the police for prosecution,” reads part of the memo.
Even those residing in the hostels, the university added, will have their accommodation withdrawn and seek external service outside the institution.
“Apart from prosecution, those staying in the university hostels will have accommodation services withdrawn so that they can reside outside,” the memo further stated.
The university noted that students who joined the institution in the year 2016 and 2017 are the most notorious in procuring abortion.
Majority of these students resides in the university hostels as they are in their first and second year of study.
Kenyan law on abortion
Article 26(4) of the Kenya constitution reads, “Abortion is not permitted unless, in the opinion of a trained health professional, there is need for emergency treatment, or the life or health of the mother is in danger, or if permitted by any other written law.”
A 2015 research carried out to determine incidence of induced abortion in Kenya revealed that an estimated 464,000 cases occurred in the country. This translate to about 48 out of every 1000 women between 15 to 49 years, a ratio of 30 per 100 live birth.
The study further pointed out that about 120,000 women received care for complications of induced abortions in health facilities.
About half of all pregnancies in Kenya that took place that year were unintended and interestingly, 41 percent of the statistics ended in an abortion.
Most victims who find themselves with unintended pregnancies prefer going for unsafe means of procuring abortion or seek for abortion from unqualified health specialists for fear of the law catching up with them.
By joseph Macharia