By Dupe Isename

The Media is a strategic partner in the campaign to legalize policies that protect women’s health and rights.

This came to fore at a capacity building training on women’s sexual reproductive health and rights / Global Gag Rule , GGR organised by IPAS Nigeria in Ibadan , Oyo State.

In a paper titled ” Burden of Maternal Deaths from unsafe abortion in Nigeria ” , IPAS consultant , Dr Steve Lemadoro called for a paradigm shift from the country’s restrictive abortion laws to reduce maternal mortality.

Dr Lemadoro expressed that the media was strategically placed to advocate the enforcement of laws that protects women’s sexual rights and health.

The medical practitioner however commended the enactment of the Violence Against Persons Prohibition Act , VAPP and enjoined all states to adopt the VAPP act which seeks to end sexual violence.

IPAS Media Consultant , Mr Emmanuel Ugoji asked journalists to expand coverage of issues about women’s health and rights particular at the grassroots.

A women’s rights activist , Dr Abiola Akiyode – Afolabi speaking on the U.S Global Gag Rule , GGR which forbids grants for abortion services outside the U.S described the rule as undemocratic and hurtful to women calling for action against it.

IPAS Nigeria Country Director , Mr Lucky Palmer said the NGO for close to four decades had been a vanguard of health , access and rights for the Nigerian people especially women.

He pointed out that IPAS Nigeria had also been an advocate of the the concept that ” the lives of Nigerian women and girls matter ” hence deaths and injuries from unsafe abortion should be entirely prevented.

Mr Palmer also enjoined the media to draw more focus on issues around women’s sexual reproductive health and rights / Global Gag Rule GGR to improve the country’s record in maternal mortality. #

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