Amnesty Exhibition

Mitchelle Hella, 26 years

Korogocho Mother

It was a July morning on my way to church when I felt labour pains. I was pregnant with my second born. At the hospital, the doctor insisted on delivering my baby through a C-Section. I refused. I was left unattended and delivered my baby myself. The medical response was not fast enough. My baby stopped breathing. They placed the baby in an empty carton box. I was told to find a bed space and forced to share my space with five other mothers. I am familiar with the birthing process so I am certain I was not managed well.

‘Huyu hashakufa’ ‘Acha kusumbua’

‘Chukua cotton wool, jipanguze’

Mercyline Ongachi, 20 years

Mukuru Mother

I was a first-time mother pregnant with twins. On 25 August 2019 I went into preterm labour. At the hospital I cried for help for a long time. I delivered my first baby by myself and placed him on the bed. When the doctor finally came to help, he proceeded to remove my placenta and was surprised to find out there was another baby on the way. He delivered the second baby. He carried both my sons and told me that they wouldn’t make it. My babies were placed in an empty box. I could see them moving inside the box.

“You think this one can survive? This one cannot survive even if we place him in the incubator, he won’t stay for long, so this one can’t survive”

“Box haiwekwangi mtoto! Mtoto sio mzigo, sio sukari sio unga, ati tunaeka kwa box, box huwekwa kwa supermarket”

Celestine Atieno, 35 years

Kibera Mother

I was pregnant with my third child. My pregnancies are normally complicated. I bleed a lot. After a difficult pregnancy I went into labour at 8 months. I remember the doctor instructing the nurse to stay close to me to monitor the progression of my labour. In the middle of the night, I felt extremely uncomfortable and called out for help. The nurse kept dismissing my cries. I delivered by myself before my daughter passed on. It took me 3 days of back and forth to locate my daughter’s body. The hospital had tried to prevent my husband and I from taking her home.

“Pole umempoteza lakini usijali utapata mwingine bado ni mdogo”

“Sasa huyu ni mdogo sana hakuna haja ya kumpeleka mortuary, tupatie tu Kes 1000 tuone vile tutafanya”