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Friday, 20 April 2012

The curse of Women Emancipation: Ugandan men donate sperm to wealthy women

Ugandan men donate sperm to wealthy women

Publish Date: Apr 20, 2012

By Cecilia Okoth

A number of wealthy Ugandan women are opting for Artificial Insemination Using Donor Sperm (AID) to get babies.

According to Dr. Prakash Patel, a Gynaecologist at the Fertility Endoscopy Clinic in Nakasero, most of the women who are opting for artificial insemination are from the urban corporate class.

Dr Patel told the New Vision that they have handled a number of women in need of AID. He however said that due to ethical issues, he wasn't at liberty to mention any cases or discuss the issue in greater detail.

"Women today, are more educated and career oriented and therefore do not have much time on their hands. That is why you see some of them waking up at a much later age to have children," Patel said.

Most of the women, who are resorting to this method of getting pregnant, are always aged between 25 and 45 years.

Unlike in the past, where women were considered to be of inferior sex and denied education by some parents, today they are increasingly taking on leadership roles and responsibilities in society.

Patel also said that women who want to have babies without getting into relationships with male partners have opted for Artificial Insemination Using Donor Sperm.

Some women resort to AID after discovering that they have infertile partners who desperately want to have children as well.

Patel said that according to the international law, every fertility clinic is required to limit every sperm donor to no more than eight children.

Artificial insemination is a treatment for infertility, when a couple cannot conceive a baby. It involves directly inserting sperm into a woman's womb.

Artificial insemination can help a couple conceive if there is a problem with the man's sperm or he has erectile dysfunction or premature ejaculation.

"In case the half-brother and half-sister resulting from sperm donation have children, there is a high chance of genetic abnormalism and incest among those children," he explained.

"Society cannot have 1000 children looking similar both physically and genetically. The variation of the human race has to continue," he added.

However, Patel said the identity of the sperm donor still remains a confidential matter. "Before women or couples go through the AID process, they sign documents saying they cannot ask for the identity of their sperm donor and the reverse is true for the donor."

"He cannot even ask questions like where his sperms have been used to fertilize which woman" .

There is a strict criterion in which a person first goes through before they become a sperm donor. These include thorough check-ups on the family history, hereditary diseases like diabetes and sickle cells, mental problems, and physical behaviors.

He should be a person who neither drinks nor smokes. Such a person must also be intelligent and must have good hobbies, according to Dr. Patel.

Patel however declined to discuss matter relating to how much women have to pay for the AID. He said the amount of money also depends on the type of sperm donor a woman wants to father her kid.