A current Yahoo article bemoans the high rate of maternal fatalities in Uganda. The article, written by Amy Fallon, reads:
Kampala (AFP) – As she lay bleeding to death in Valente Inziku’s arms in a Ugandan government hospital in October 2010, Jennifer Anguko, pregnant with the couple’s fourth child, wished her husband well as a single parent.
“She said she’s going and I have struggled in vain, that no-one has helped her and everything is finished,” Inziku said, recalling the moment when his wife bled to death. “She told me to look after the children.”
Nearly four years later, her husband is still waiting for the government of Uganda — where an estimated 16 women die though childbirth-related complications every day — to face up to the gruesome reality of maternal health…
The 2012/13 State of Uganda Children report, released by the country’s health ministry in August, found Uganda’s maternal mortality ratio is at 438 per 100,000 live births — one of the highest rates in the world…
Sylvia Nalubowa was another pregnant woman who bled to death in August 2009 at Mityana District Hospital, about 80 kilometres (50 miles) outside the Ugandan capital Kampala, allegedly after corrupt medical staff wilfully neglected the mother of seven.
Rhoda Kukiriza, who was with her daughter-in-law until the end and accused health workers of leaving Nalubowa unattended after she refused to pay a bribe, is another petitioner in the landmark case.
It’s hard not to notice: A mother of four and a mother of seven. A glance at a comparative chart of national fertility rates shows that the top 12 most fertile countries are all found in sub-Saharan Africa. Uganda, with a rate of 47.38 per 1000, has hardly changed since the year 2000. It is number 2 on the list, second only to Niger.
According to healthline.com:
A woman who has had five or more previous pregnancies is more susceptible to abnormally quick labor and accompanying excessive blood loss during future labors.
So it should be no surprise that, in a country where the average woman has about six children, such complications will be more common. Add African corruption to this scenario (where poor women cannot afford to pay bribes for adequate care) and a high maternal death-rate is guaranteed.
Africans can get defensive when confronted about their high fertility rates. They often try to make it seem like an innocuous cultural phenomenon, which is a private matter of little concern to non-Africans. But It should be of concern to us because, as the rest of the world bickers over religion, pieces of land or politics, Africans are mass-producing babies – and this is how they will conquer the world.
When the entire world is like Uganda, will it really be a happier place?