|Melinda Gates speaking at the opening of the London |
Summit on Family Planning.
Credit: UK Department for International Development
A Nigerian woman is asking philanthropist Melinda Gates to reconsider her push for birth control in poor countries, explaining that African women neither need nor want contraception.
“Growing up in a remote town in Africa, I have always known that a new life is welcomed with much mirth and joy,” said Obianuju Ekeocha, a biomedical scientist who is currently working in Canterbury, England.In an open letter published Aug. 10 by the Catholic Free Press, Ekeocha told Gates that “we, as a society, love and welcome babies.”
“The first day of every baby’s life is celebrated by the entire village,” she said, describing the dancing, clapping and singing that greet each new life.Ekeocha explained that with all the “challenges and difficulties” that come with living in Africa, people “lament their problems openly.” Yet growing up this environment, she continued, “I have never heard a woman complain about her baby,” either before or after birth.
In the midst of affliction and instability, she said, “our babies are always a firm symbol of hope, a promise of life, a reason to strive for the legacy of a bright future.”The 32-year-old Nigerian woman voiced dismay at Gates’ recent announcement that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation was securing $4.6 billion dollars to promote contraceptives in poor nations, including numerous African countries.
Many of the nations that will be targeted by Gates’ initiative are Catholic countries, where sex is highly regarded as “sacred and private,” she said, explaining that unlike the Western world, many people in Africa are happily complying with Church teaching on sexuality.
Blogger's note: This EWTN article was published in August 2012