Lawyer Criticises Clerics in Kenya Over Abortion

Religious leaders opposing the proposed constitution have been accused of hiding under claims of sanctity of life, even as the Catholic church said it would not support the draft law.

Constitutional lawyer Mutakha Kangu said the Church’s objection of the new law on the basis of abortion clauses was assuming that trained health professionals would be used to kill the unborn.

He wondered why religious leaders were not opposed to the clause on right to life that says a person can be deprived of life intentionally to the extent authorised by the constitution.

“Death sentences can be passed through legislation and the Church does not seem to oppose that, yet it’s creating an impression that it is concerned with protecting life,” said Dr Kangu.

He said the struggle for a new constitution which has taken some 20 years now, started when Kenyans felt the need to clip the powers of the presidency.

He said that abortion, kadhi courts and counties were never the reasons behind the push for a better constitution, although they were equally important issues.

Those thinking that kadhi courts would make Kenya a Muslim state should stop assumptions that had no basis, he warned.

“The kadhi courts are in the current constitution. Besides, a Muslim who offends a Christian will still end up in the normal courts,” said Dr Kangu.

Recently retired president Daniel Moi told a rally in Eldoret that the clause on citizenship was not good as it might see foreigners accorded Kenyan citizenship.

The former leader has also criticised the constitution citing land and abortion as some of the clauses that should be looked into before the referendum.

http://allafrica.com/stories/201007050365.html

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