Savita Halappanavar’s death from sepsis in 2012 was a tragedy for her, her husband, her family, and her unborn child.
As a result of errors made by the hospital, and a lack of legal clarity, Ireland brought in the The Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act (2013) to make sure cases like Savita’s were dealt with more swiftly, thereby trying to ensure a better outcome for mother and (where possible) baby.
But despite the 2013 law, which goes a long way towards this tragedy ever happening again, it has been a huge surprise to still see Savita as an icon of abortion pressure groups in Ireland and around the word ever since 2012. Savita’s parents have been the high-profile face of the recent referendum on the Eight Amendment. Now there is talk of a new law bearing Savita’s name, a law that many see as effectively allowing ‘abortion on demand’, similar to the UK’s 1967 Abortion Act.
25th May 2018 was a sad day for Ireland with 66% of the populace wanting to see the 8th Amendment repealed. Even sadder to see the crowds partying, despite the victorious politicians trying to discourage such tasteless displays and instead trying to engender a more sober, reflective, atmosphere.
Savita’s parents Akkamahadevi Yalgi and Andanappa Yalgi told the BBC that ,”It was a battle of six years and the battle is won, her soul will rest in peace now.”
My question is “Why?”. Why, when you have lost a daughter and an unborn grandchild, campaign for more death? More taking of life? More bloodshed? Why have your daughter’s name immortalised in a law that will represent the taking of life?
I believe that Mr and Mrs Yalgi have sought too much publicity, and have sought to blame a nation’s laws for the death of their daughter. Laws which have already been improved. Surely they must realise that all pregnancy has its risks? Yes, the hospital blundered, and a tragedy ensued, but to travel the road from 2012, via the new 2013 law, to 2018’s repeal of the 8th Amendment is, frankly, inconceivable. There must also be the possibility that pro-abortion groups have shamelessly manipulated the Yalgis to push for this referendum.
It is my hope and prayer that, in time, Mr and Mrs Yalgi will regret the changes they have helped usher in.