CEHURD fellowship reveals flaws in East Africa’s reproductive health rights

By David Njagi

March 2015 was especially a slow month for me. But it ended on an informed bend.
The one week Center for Health, Human Rights and Development (CEHURD) media training in Entebbe shed lots of light on why East Africa is still poles apart in terms of achieving reproductive health rights.
The experts who shared with us their professional position on the topic had a good grasp of the subject, but my observation was that they are not happy on how governments are handling reproductive health rights within the region.
When they are not working hard to crunch ambiguous laws, they will be fidgeting with snappy policies which have only succeeded in fueling confusion on topical issues such as abortion, I observed.
While this charade plays out, journalists are left agonizing on how to report a reproductive health story in a way that sheds new insights, in an informative, educative and entertaining style.
However, I am sure some of the skills passed along during the event have sharpened my vigil – and others’ – on such bottlenecks.
Be that as it may, the flipside of the meeting was not such a boring interaction.
The Ugandan Team was warm and welcoming. Kigali was cheerful, as Burundi kept us focused with their insightful shots on how East African journalists can wheedle their way around while reporting science.
Tanzania brought along their ‘birds and bees’ understanding of science reporting, as Kenya kept the panelists on edge with their endless take about reproductive health rights in the region.
Despite the diverse debate that the event attracted, it was the ever smiling Joy Asasira that kept the objectives of the workshop rolling.
Cheers and thank you all.

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About seventysixthstreet

Science and human rights journalist, Kenya
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