Dollars and Deception in Kenya

The national referendum on Kenya’s new pro-abortion constitution is official with 67% of the voters casting their ballots for it. The previous Kenyan Constitution proclaimed that human life begins at conception, and that all human life was worthy of being defended.

In fact, the wording of the new constitution retains part of this strong pro-life language: “Every person has the right to life. The life of a person begins at conception.” Yet in another demonstration of the deception employed regularly by pro-abortion elites, an unelected international committee of “experts” added the following in Article 26: “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 law.”

That’s right. Abortion is now constitutionally legal whenever the pregnancy may affect the health of the mother, whenever any “health professional” deems it necessary, or whenever any law at all says it is legal. This language in the new constitution essentially opens up the floodgates on abortion for this pro-life country.

How did this happen? A large part of the blame can be placed upon the Obama administration, which spent over $23 million of US tax payer money to promote passage of the new constitution. Pro-life Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ) and others have forced an investigation by the office of the Inspector General, revealing the expenditures, which, despite the administration’s denials can be traced easily to openly pro-abortion organizations who were charged with getting out the vote in support of the referendum.

But here’s the catch: Spending government funds to lobby for or against abortion in foreign countries is illegal through a law known as the Siljander Amendment, and they’ve been caught red-handed. Not that they appear to have any respect for law, or any policy they haven’t created themselves. The Obama/Clinton pro-abortion foreign policy of the US government may become this administrations’ “Watergate” or “Iran-Contra,” but in the meantime Kenya bore the brunt of a propaganda campaign funded with millions of US tax dollars.

The vast majority of Kenyans declare that they are opposed to the legalization of abortion, but similarly high numbers voted for the new constitution. A big reason for this was the flagrantly dishonest public denials by Kenya’s political leaders that abortion would be legalized by the new constitution.

Kenya’s Catholic bishops and other Christian leaders spoke out forcefully against the new constitution as did pro-life groups, but they did not have the enormous access to the means of mass communication that the “Yes” campaign enjoyed.

Tribal and religious politics also played a big role in the outcome. Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki is from the most numerous tribe in the country, the Kikuyus. Since he endorsed the constitution, many from his ethnic group took their lead from his stance. Muslims were given an incentive to vote for the constitution in the form of “kadhi,” or Islamic, courts, which rule on the basis of Sharia Law in marriage, divorce and inheritance cases.

One cannot miss the irony that this assault on Kenya was perpetrated by an administration led by one who has Kenyan blood flowing through his veins. Nor should we miss the fact that this referendum passed because of the activity of radical feminists.

Where does Kenya go from here?

There will be an immediate opportunity to pass amendments to the constitution. One of the promises of the “Yes” campaigners was that the new constitution can be amended. The majority of Kenyan legislators and voters would like to see pro-life modifications to the constitution, so this should be done as soon as possible.

Since the constitution has both pro-life language and anti-life provisions, legislators can pass pro-life laws. They can codify the basic right to life included in the constitution and declare that abortion is not allowed. This would undoubtedly lead to court battles that the pro-life side will have to fight.

One wonders if the Obama administration, which has thus far flouted not only US law, but the will of the Kenyan people, will continue to do all it can to ensure that abortion is fully legalized throughout Kenya. Their arrogance and nakedly aggressive intervention seems to know no bounds.

Clearly, Kenya is at a crossroads. If there is not a massive societal rejection of legalized abortion, it will be imposed on the nation. We must pray that the Church and pro-life movement will be able to fight this battle successfully. Kenya’s future depends on it.

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  • consecrata

    THis is a tragedy! Kenya is one of Africa’s success stories. Remember, Mother Teresa said that a nation that kills its young cannot survive – now Kenya falls under that prophecy. And let us remember also that Joe Biden went there to convince them to pass a pro-abortion constitution promising them that if they did, the ‘money would flow’…Joe Biden a Catholic who must still be in good standing because he is permitted to receive the Eucharist while promoting the killing of millions of babies…how low must we go before we see the truth? How far will these ‘Catholic’ politicians have to go before our Bishops comply with Canon Law and tell them they are not permitted to receive the Eucharist? Must they do the killing themselves before they are informed that they are not Catholics in good standing???? Obama has enlisted so many ‘Catholics’, individually and in groups to stand against the Church teaching on abortion…will he be able to get them to agree now to infanticide? He is for allowing a baby who survives an abortion to die…to receive no care or comfort. How many Catholics will stand with him on that…? More and more I think, since once we accept the killing of the unborn baby, what more will we not do? May the Lord protect and defend these babies and their mothers…and pierce the hearts of our Bishops to stand for these innocent little ones and stop the killing!!!

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  • DRF

    Wait, so elective abortion is still illegal, but women can terminate their pregnancies if there is a serious risk to their lives? There should be absolutely no logical objection to this. The women’s lives deserve to be defended too.

    As for the health exception, I support that as well. The Kenyan women, not the Kenyan government, should be the ones to decide what health risks they take when bringing a child into the world.

  • waynergf

    Ah, but DRF, it all hangs on the operational definition of “serious risk”…and who makes that determination…and what their motives are…and their qualifications…

    And I belive you’ll find that the Church teaches that, after conception, and all avaialable care is received, God decides “…what health risks” are taken…and most importantly, the outcome.

  • Under the principle known as “double effect,” a procedure undertaken to save the life of the mother that unintentionally results in the death of the unborn child is and always has been morally licit. If that’s what the framers of the Kenyan Constitution intended, why didn’t they say so? The language of the Constitution is unequivocal doublespeak. The people–and unborn children–of Kenya have been betrayed, and Obama’s administration, among others, is guilty.

  • daddylarry

    DRF: Just so we’re on the same page, let me re-quote article 26: “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 law.”

    A “trained health professional” can be anyone with medical training who might want to perform an abortion. The definition of “need for emergency treatment” does not have to be a life threatening need. The US Supreme Court has defined “health” as anything to do with a person’s well being. Under that definition the term “health” can make an abortion legal if a woman is worried that a hangnail might get worse.

    The most dangerous part of article 26 is the provision “if permitted by any other law”. The new constitution permits the government to pass through any means a law permitting abortion on demand.

    Hopefully, this will not be permitted to stand.