August 3, 2023

SOGOC Initiates Contest on Comprehensive Abortion Care dubbed “IAmSafe”

The Society of Gynaecologists and Obstetricians of Cameroon SOGOC in partnership with the International Federation of Gynaecologist and Obstetricians FIGO,  is launching a Safe Abortion Access campaign for eligible cases within the context of the Cameroonian law (i.e the Penal code)  dubbed “ I AM SAFE CAMPAIGN” that will run from August 1 to October 30, 2023.

The contest is holding within the context of the Advocacy for Comprehensive Abortion Care ACAC project running for 5th years and counting now. The objectives of the contest are:

– To have at least 20000 persons reached and sensitized on the dangers of unsafe abortion. 

-To have at least 20000 people, especially women and girls informed about the various stakeholders involved in the provision of safe abortion services in Cameroon.

-To increase awareness on the impact of unsafe and safe abortion services in Cameroon to over 20 000 persons as per the penal code.

-To educate the public on the administrative and legal procedures of safe abortion for pregnancies resulting from rape.

SOGOC Launches "I Am Safe Campaign" Constest
SOGOC Launches “I Am Safe Campaign” Constest

The contest idea is to engage participants (young activists, artists and journalists) in a competition using various art forms to raise awareness on the consequences of unsafe abortion and safe abortion services for eligible cases in Cameroon. Three winners will be chosen at the end of the I AM SAFE CAMPAIGN..

All entries and submissions for this competition should be emailed to [email protected] latest August 25, 2023. 

For short videos, they should be in 720pixels in dimensions and saved as an mp4 file. It should not exceed 2 minutes to make it easily shareable on social media. 

For pictures, they should be at least 1080 pixels in dimensions and should be saved as a .jpg or .png file. 

For all text-based entries, they should be emailed in both pdf and docx files.

It should be noted, the winner of this competition will be decided by 50% voting and 50% analysis from our panel of judges made up of an Artist, Activists and journalist. 

Rewards will include communication gadgets like phones, laptops and media exposure. The best 3 entries will be awarded the above-mentioned prizes accordingly.

-First Prize will be awarded a Laptop

-Second Prize a brand new phone and communication credit

-Third Prize will receive a brand new phone.

The context targets women, stakeholders (healthcare providers, judiciary & policy makers) and young girls. 

Many people are still in the dark when it comes to provisions of the law in Cameroon on #abortion. The Cameroon Penal Code Law no.2016/007 Articles 337-339 clears this confusion as follows;

Section 337 – Abortion

(1) Any woman procuring or consenting to her own abortion shall be punished with imprisonment for from 15 (fifteen) days to 1 (one) year or with fine of from CFAF 5 000 (five thousand) to CFAF 200 000 (two hundred thousand) or with both such imprisonment and fine.

(2) Whoever procures the abortion of a woman, notwithstanding her consent, shall be punished with imprisonment for from 1 (one) to 5 (five) years and with fine of from CFAF 100 000 (one hundred thousand) to CFAF 2 000 000 (two million).

(3) The penalties prescribed by subsection (2) shall be doubled where the offender –

(a) Engages habitually in abortion, or

(b) Practices the profession of medicine or an allied profession.

(4) In the circumstances of subsection (3) (b), the Court may also order closure of the professional premises and impose a ban on his occupation under sections 34 and 36 of this Code.

Section 338 – Assault on woman with child

Whoever by force used against a woman with child or against a child being born causes, intentionally or unintentionally the death or permanent incapacity of the child shall be punished with imprisonment for from 5 (five) to 10 (ten) years and with fine of from CFAF 100 000 (one hundred thousand) to CFAF 2 000 000 (two million).

Section 339 – Saving mother

(1) Neither of the two foregoing sections shall apply to acts performed by a qualified person and proved necessary for the saving of the mother from grave danger to her health.

(2) In a case of pregnancy resulting from rape, abortion by a qualified medical practitioner after certificate by the prosecution of a good case shall constitute no offence.

Taking into consideration these aspects of the penal code, we would appreciate entries that create a positive than negative impact of safe abortion for eligible cases.

The President of SOGOC, prof Emile Mboudou in a press release on the contest, says many people are still in the dark when it comes to understanding abortion related laws in the country. 

The campaign will run under the hashtag #IAmSAFE which translates to #JSuisSAFE in French, in all the social media platforms.

Some campaign posters

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