The Legal Frameworks for the Protection of Women’s Reproductive Health Rights in South Africa and Nigeria: Some Comparative Lessons
Dr. Eniola Bolanle Oluwakemi, Prof. Mubangizi John Cantius

African governments do not prioritize the protection of women‟s reproductive health rights, although there are provisions relating to the right to health which incorporate women‟s reproductive health and autonomy in several international and regional treaties. Many African countries have incorporated some of these international treaties into their domestic legal systems. The different approaches adopted by South Africa and Nigeria in incorporating international treaties into their domestic laws and the clear disparities between the two countries are discussed and compared. The international legal framework for women‟s reproductive health rights has not been as effective as it should be in the two countries and the reasons for this are discussed. Under the existing legal frameworks in South Africa and Nigeria, women are faced with the challenge of effectively realizing their reproductive health rights. This, in part, is a result of the plural legal systems and cultural practices entrenched in the two countries, and a lack of adequate political representation for women. It is concluded that if international law is to be meaningful and worthwhile in protecting women‟s reproductive health rights, states must ratify the relevant international treaties and ensure that they are domesticated.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jswhr.v5n2a1