African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) MP Cheryllyn Dudley’s private members bill on abortion hit another stumbling block on Wednesday, as the Department of Health urged MPs to reject it. The bill’s proposals, if implemented, would be prohibitively expensive and make it harder for women to safely terminate unwanted pregnancies, said Yogan Pillay, the health department’s deputy director-general for HIV/AIDS, TB and maternal, child and women’s health. The World Health Organisation (WHO) had advised the health department that the conditions the bill attached to obtaining abortions were not evidence based and were at odds with WHO guidelines on abortion, said Pillay. "They are likely to further hamper access to safe abortion within the public sector and contribute to a rise in unsafe abortions, which carry a higher risk of morbidity," he said, quoting correspondence from the WHO. The proposals also increased the likelihood that women would die from unsafe abortions, he told Parliamen...

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