Can I abort?

When a human being can claim life or when life actually begins has generated controversy and serious debate globally. On issue over whether a woman can or cannot abort a pregnancy and that of foetus to life; there is no dissent of the fact that life probably starts at this stage and this unborn child’s right is protected under national[1], regional and international law.

A child in its mother’s womb is for many purposes regarded by legal fiction as already born. For example, such unborn child is a person for the purpose of acquisition of property.[2]

Under our law in Nigeria, ‘a person is a human being when it becomes independent of its mother’s body whether or not the umbilical cord is severed”[3]

Abortion is a crime in Nigeria and it is only permitted when the mother’s life is in danger. Kindly note that a medical practitioner is in position to decide if abortion would be required in order to save the mother’s life in this circumstance not a boyfriend, man-friend, best friend including the mother.

For those who like to take pills, local concoction to induce abortion, you have to be very careful. Let us bring it to the notice of everyone here that law permits that a child may sue his/her parents for harm/injury caused him/her deliberately, carelessly, negligently or through neglect before, during or after the birth of that child[4]

[1] Child Right Act

[2] Salmond, Jurisprudence, op. cit., 355

[3] Section 307 of Criminal Code

[4] Section 17of the Child Rights Act 2004