What now?

Women and baby marching for an end to forced sterilization

Women and baby marching for an end to forced sterilization

As we have already noted, the case has been postponed until 24 November. In November the lawyers will be arguing about a specific legal matter. Namely, the government is claiming that according to a specific law, the Public Services Act, anyone suing the government has to bring their case to court within a year of the action happening. So in our case they are saying that the women had to file their case in court within a year of having been sterilized. But we are saying that that only applies to public employees suing the government and not to people alleging human rights and constitutional violations. And that for cases like ours we should have three years to bring the case. I know this sounds like legal technicalities but this has tremendous implications for not only our case but for anyone in Namibia who wants to hold the government to account for violating their human and constitutional rights.

Despite the delay in the case, we are going to continue with raising the issue and our campaign to ensure that the coerced sterilization of HIV positive women ends. Keep checking back regularly as we plan further events



March and case to start today

The case of three HIV positive women who were allegedly sterilized without their consent at public hospitals in Namibia is scheduled to start in the Namibian High Court this morning.  The cases are currently to end on the 23 October.  It is unclear whether the case will in fact start this morning but we will keep you updated.

Before the case starts, the campaign has organized a march.  The details can be found here.

Press release: March tomorrow

Press Statement
Embargoed for 19 October 2005
Windhoek, October 19 2005

On 20 October, concerned citizens and civil society organisations in Windhoek marched together in protest of the alleged sterilisation of women living with HIV in public health facilities in Namibia. In 2007, reports emerged that women living with HIV, seeking reproductive health services, were allegedly subjected to sterilisation without their full and informed consent in public health facilities in two of the thirteen regions of Namibia.

The march is a component of the “End Forced Sterilisation!”, campaign which aims to raise public awareness of this gross violation of human rights and seek redress for the affected women. It is also a call to the Namibian government to immediately stop the practise of the alleged sterilisation of women living with HIV without their full and informed consent.

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