Aliyu Giwa, a police officer in the Force Public Relations Office (FPRO), has said Nigerian law prohibits anyone from carrying out abortion either on themselves or on others.
He said this is in a Twitter post on Tuesday where he cited sections of the constitution that prohibit such abortion and other related offences.
According to him, anyone directly or indirectly involved in the process that leads to miscarriage is liable to imprisonment.
He wrote: “If you already know this! Then this is a reminder. And if you don’t know, then know it now! The criminal code Act, section 228 – 230 says:
“228. ATTEMPTS TO PROCURE ABORTION – Any person who, with intent to procure miscarriage of a woman whether she is or is not with child, unlawfully administers to her or causes her to take any poison or other noxious thing, or uses any force of any kind, or uses any other means whatever, is guilty of a felony, and is liable to imprisonment for fourteen years.
“229. Attempts To Procure Own Miscarriage: Any woman who, with intent to procure her own miscarriage whether she is or is not with child, unlawfully administers to herself any poison or other noxious thing, or uses any force of any kind, or uses any other means whatever, or permits any such thing or means to be administered or used to her, is guilty of a felony, and is liable to imprisonment for seven years.
“230. supplying drugs or instruments to procure abortion. Any person who unlawfully supplies to or procures for any person anything whatever, knowing that it is intended to be unlawfully used to procure the miscarriage of a woman, whether she is or is not with child, is guilty of a felony, and is liable to imprisonment for three years.
“If you already know this and you still don’t care. My brother and sister God will surely expose you.”
SaharaReporters could not find recent statistics on abortion rates in Nigeria.
However, according to Guttmacher Institute, an estimated 1.25 million induced abortions occurred in Nigeria in 2012, “equivalent to a rate of 33 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–49”.
The study said, “Fifty-six percent of unintended pregnancies were resolved by abortion. About 212,000 women were treated for complications of unsafe abortion, representing a treatment rate of 5.6 per 1,000 women of reproductive age, and an additional 285,000 experienced serious health consequences but did not receive the treatment they needed.”