Let Family Planning Be Africa’s Legacy

“Under the theme of ‘Full Access, Full Choice,’ it is believed that the 2013 International Conference on Family Planning will again shed light on the fact that despite wins achieved in the area of access to family planning services, much work remains to be done,” Ethiopian Minister of Foreign Affairs Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus writes in an AllAfrica.com opinion piece. “As a continent, we must do better – both in our actions, and our words,” he states, adding, “[W]e must ensure that every girl and woman has access to family planning services and information, while providing support for healthcare workers who have the tools, skills and education to help keep our families healthy and strong.”

“Through the efforts of African countries working in partnership with leading [non-governmental organizations (NGOs)] such as Women Deliver, UNFPA, Partners in Population and Development and the Global Poverty Project, awareness about and demands for improved access to family planning services is growing,” Ghebreyesus continues. “From leaders in the Global North to leaders in the Global South, the private sector to NGOs, we cannot achieve universal access to family planning services alone. We need every country in Africa to give due consideration to the necessity for family planning to be a priority in the new development agenda,” he writes, and concludes, “Let this be the legacy of Africa. The future of our continent depends on it” (11/12).