AFRICA/MALAWI - Religious leaders united in defending the sacredness of life: no to abortion
Monday, 21 September 2020
Lilongwe (Agenzia Fides) - The Bishops' Conference of Malawi (ECM) and other religious bodies, such as the Council of Churches of Malawi (MCC), the Evangelical Association of Malawi (EAM), the Muslim Association of Malawi and the Muslim Quadria Association from Malawi, expressed concern over the proposal of the Parliamentary Committee on health calling for a change regarding the abortion law.
According to religious organizations in Malawi, the proposed amendment of the abortion law is "immoral and sinful", because it is contrary to God's command to consider life sacred.
In a statement published on September 14, signed by the Bishops' Conference and other religious leaders, the proposal to legalize abortion is criticized, arguing that no institution, including Parliament, courts and the executive branch of the government, has a mandate to end of life, except God.
"Human life is a fundamental value because God created it (Gen 1-27). The Islamic faith on the other hand believes that Allah created humanity for a purpose", stresses the statement. The religious bodies of the country, citing Jeremiah 1-5, called citizens to consider life as sacred, protect it and preserve it with extreme care from conception, urging them to continue to safeguard the life of children, including the life of the unborn child, as established in section 13, 22 , 33 of the Republican Constitution.
The religious leaders then appealed to the people of Malawi to ask the members of Parliament not to approve the bill defined as "genocidal" for unborn children.
This is the second time that the controversial abortion law amendment has been proposed by civil society organizations (CSOs). CSOs have called for termination of pregnancy to be a choice of women, arguing that most of them are dying from dangerous illegal abortions. However, the country's religious leaders rejected the proposal in a nationwide protest on 6 December 2016 with the "March for Life and Family".
The abortion law in Malawi exceptionally provides for the termination of pregnancy when the life of the mother is in danger and prohibits the voluntary abortion of women and girls. (L.B.) (Full Text Source: Agenzia Fides, 21/9/2020)