“It really breaks my heart to see young girls dying as a result of unsafe abortion; they are supposed to be future leaders. The high rate of abortion should be of great concern to every Zambian,” Young Women Christian Association (YWCA) president Lucy Lungu has said.
Ms. Lungu observed that unsafe abortions had become a serious problem in need of immediate attention as the country was being robbed of its human resource, adding that in most instances it was very young girls who were the victims of unsafe abortions.
The Zambia Medical Association last week sounded the warning on unsafe abortions and has commenced multi-sectoral consultation to find answers to the problem.
She noted that unsafe abortion was one of the chief factors for the increasing maternal death rate in the country.
“It’s sad to note that cases of abortion have continued to be on the rise, and in most cases young girls as young as 13 are vulnerable to such,” Ms. Lungu said.
She said the levels at which unsafe abortions were destroying the lives of young Zambian girls should be of great concern to all citizens.
She attributed the increased cases of unsafe abortion among girls to lack of information.
She indicated that most young girls fall victims of unsafe abortions because they had no one to tell them the consequences of having an abortion.
“It is saddening that teenage girls have continued losing their lives due to lack of information on the dangers of unsafe teenage pregnancy termination.
“When young girls do not have anyone to talk to them about their reproductive health, they get pregnant and resort to desperate measures to put an end to unplanned pregnancies,” she said.
She said there was need for Government and other stakeholders to scale up sensitization programmes to educate young girls on the implications of unsafe abortion.
“There is need for everyone involved in this to prevent unplanned pregnancies and abortion among young girls, by sensitising them on the danger of unsafe abortion,” she said.
Zambia Medical Association president Aaron Mujajati has said the problem of unsafe abortions has proved to be ‘‘beyond medicine and required the more physical approach’’ with the input of all members of society including political parties, civil society organizations and the Government.
Dr Mujajati said the country was unaware of the extent of the problem resulting from unsafe abortions that led to so many women suffering from fertility complications, including death.
Last week the Association met with traditional leaders in an effort to chart the way forward to ending unsafe abortions.