Presentations on the Global Day of Actions for the Decriminalization of Abortion in Goma

Message to the population of Goma on the occasion of the commemoration of the International Day of Actions to Reduce Abortion Stigma this Thursday March 2024.

Florence during the presentation to participants on March 28 at our offices in Goma

Here is the Presentation of Florence on reduction of abortion stigma in Goma, French Version here ” LA JOURNEE INTERNATION DE LA CAMPAGNE SUR LA STIGMATISATION DE L

Here is the Presentation of Godelive on the situation of women in Goma , French version here ” THEME LA JOURNEE INTERNATIONALE DE LA FEMME

March 28th of each year is the International Day of Actions to Reduce Abortion Stigma, we are so pleased that through our efforts the Democratic Republic of Congo in general and the town of Goma in particular is not left behind, we are in communion today together will all others who believe in the rights of women especially to right to choose freely. For the first time we are proud to spark the conversation on issues surrounding abortion in Goma and in DRC, and this in support of the country to fulfill her international and national obligations and her supreme strive to save life of women.

The fact of being here today and constituting the very first Group of Action on all issues surrounding abortion in Goma and in DRC is great news, the mere fact of being here today and willingly ready to share our ideas, change our attitude and shape together a debate which will fully respect our diverse ideas is a milestone which the country needs to advance issues that affect the people. The ultimate goal is not to suppress the existence of other ideas which may be different from ours, the whole goal is to start a process which gives people free space to debate freely, agree or disagree, help them to appreciate their differences, offer them accurate information in order to make decisions and construct a culture of knowledge based on facts alongside myths, beliefs and stereotypes.

At this particular moment we are here today, this country is torn apart with the debate around “death penalty which the government has already enacted”, however some of us who are vocal of the culture of death proposed by the government, we remain silent and indifferent on the same culture of death imposed over years on women by our cultural norms and religious beliefs because they are women, not in position to defend themselves, do not hold power and cannot impose the norms in the society.

As we gather here today, in Goma we hear women who have died either of the complication related to pregnancy yet it could have been removed and the woman could live because our religious belief we say no, God will perform miracles, each day there is information on social media about babies being dumped in pit latrines and on roadsides, these realities remind us about the issue of “unwanted pregnancy”, we are witnesses of mob justice against women who are accused of having terminated the pregnancy and before even someone comes in to hear their stories, they are already being attacked, stoned and severely beaten, we powerlessly hear narratives of those who either came to this town or left this town towards another place because she removed the pregnancy and people wanted to kill her, to exclude her from the church and from the community. None of us hear may argue he/she has not yet heard about women who died to complications related to unsafe abortion. What happens if we choose to save their lives?

As organization we are not only speaking this on this particular day in order to hear the views of people but also to take actions and commitment to reduce the criminalization against those who for reasons proper to them choose not to carry pregnancy and also those who choose to keep safe the life of mother even if the fetus will be removed.

Kindly join us and together we can declare open the Campaign to Reduce Abortion Stigma in Goma and in DRC, No to all forms of death penalty against women.

We strongly refuse to adhere to society orientation, myth and stereotypes that criminalize women, we reject religious and cultural norms and beliefs that deteriorate the capacity of woman to make decisions about her body, about her future and about her entire life and that seeks to control women as subjects.

Kulihoshi Musikami Pecos

Provincial Coordinator of COJESKI North Kivu



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