A branch of a UK sexual and reproductive healthcare provider operating in Lagos has been shut down by the police following a campaign by CitzenGo, an NGO gathering petitions to drive its advocacy.
According to Ann Kioko, the executive secretary of the NGO, Marie Stopes Clinic which speialises in illegal abortion in Africa was caught right in the process when the police visited its Lagos clinic Tuesday morning.
“Last year CitizenGO exposed their abortion activities which led to their suspension in Kenya and Niger,”Kioko told the National Daily.
“Following our campaign to the Ministry of Health in Nigeria, On Tuesday May 21st morning a combined team of police detectives shut down the Marie Stopes Abortion Clinic in Lagos.”
But the healthcare provider, on its Nigeria’s website, says, in collaboration with the federal government and private partners, it has been providing post-abortion care, among other reproductive health care services, to over one million Nigerians since its establishment in Nigeria 10 years ago.
It states further that at least 10 percent of Nigerians patronize the organisation for those services, and more, including emotional support for those battling with guilt or depression after unsafe or spontaneous abortion.
Although CitizeGo claims Marie Stopes is an abortion clinic doing business in countries where abortion is illegal, the 40-year-old healthcare provider, on its international website, says it offers such service only in countries that don’t criminalise it.
The NGO insisted pieces of abortion equipment, including suction pumps and sterilizers were found in the clinic.
In a statement released Thursday after the Tuesday raid, the clinic blamed CitizenGo for the raid.
The NGO, however, said it has no police officer, and that the law enforcers were just doing their job.