Patrick Craine

Pregnant inmate put in solitary on bread and water for refusing ‘early induction’

Patrick Craine
Patrick Craine

MILTON, Ontario, November 2, 2011 ( - An Ontario inmate who is seven months pregnant says she has been put into a small, cold cell with a diet of bread and water after refusing to undergo an “early induction” that would put her child’s life and health at risk.

Eva Donna Akinyi Okello was sentenced to eight months prison in September for practicing as a nurse illegally.  She had served as a nurse in Kenya before she moved to Canada ten years ago.

In an interview with LifeSiteNews reporter Alissa Golob on Tuesday, Okello said a female doctor at the Vanier Centre for Women in Milton has put her into segregation after Okello refused the doctor’s urgings that she undergo an “early induction” of her child, who is due December 15th.

Join a Facebook page to end abortion here

After her conviction, Okello was first sent to a correctional facility in Hamilton, but was then moved to Vanier to accommodate her pregnancy.

When Okello arrived at Vanier she was seen by the female doctor, a European in her fifties, who told her life in prison and afterwards would be better if she underwent the procedure.

But Okello, who is a Catholic, repeatedly refused.  According to her, the doctor said she could not “care less” what she did, but then had her sent to segregation, where she was put into a small, cold cell and only given bread and cold water.

Okello told Golob that about five days after she was originally sent to segregation, an elderly male doctor came upon her and asked her why she was in segregation. He said she did not belong there, and had her put back in the regular cell with the other inmates. There Okello said she was able to receive the special “pregnancy” diet - the same meal as the others except with a bit extra, such as an orange or apple that she could take back to her cell and eat later.

Then a few days after that, Okello was called back to see the original female doctor, who again urged her to undergo the “early induction.”

Okello refused and so on Friday, October 28th was sent back into segregation, where she remains today.  According to Okello, the female doctor says she will remain there until she has her baby, for “safety” reasons.

But Okello says all the other female inmates have been very supportive, and have encouraged her to stand her ground against the doctor.  On the other hand, in segregation she says she is malnourished, cold, and treated poorly.

Okello revealed her concerns to pro-life activist Linda Gibbons, a fellow inmate at Vanier who is imprisoned for praying outside abortion facilities in Toronto that are protected by an injunction banning pro-life activity.

Okello told LifeSiteNews that she is prepared to stay in segregation, saying it is the least she can do to give her baby life.  But she worries that her baby will be malnourished and that her refusal to undergo the “early induction” will be counted against her and affect her sentencing.  Currently she is scheduled to be released on March 17th.

Once she has her baby, the newborn will live with her father until Okello is released from prison.

LifeSiteNews called Vanier Centre for Women to get their side of the story, but was told that they could not comment, and that all questions would have to be put through the Ontario Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services. A spokesman at the ministry told LifeSiteNews that they cannot speak about individual cases, but insisted early inductions are not recommended in prisons without due cause.

“Early induction of labour in pregnancy would not be encouraged for inmates in custody unless there were sound indications for doing so,” spokesman Greg Flood told LifeSiteNews.  “Decisions related to labour and delivery for inmates in our custody are made by the inmate, in collaboration with medical staff and, where feasible, the inmate’s community physician who will deliver the baby.”

Contact Information:

Hon Madeleine Meilleur, Ontario’s Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services
18th Floor
25 Grosvenor Street
Toronto, Ontario M7A 1Y6
Phone: 416-326-5000
Fax: 416-325-6067
E-mail: [email protected]

Superintendent Donna Keating
Vanier Centre for Women
655 Martin St
Milton, ON L9T 5E6
Phone: 905-876-8300 ext. 7316
Fax: 905-876-7334

Tim Hudak, Opposition Leader
The Ontario PC Party
19 Duncan Street
Suite 401
Toronto, ON M5H 3H1
Phone: 416-861-0020
Toll-free: 1-800-903-6453
Fax: 416-861-9593
Email: [email protected]

Share this article

Steve Jalsevac Steve Jalsevac Follow Steve

Today’s chuckle: Rubio, Fiorina and Carson pardon a Thanksgiving turkey

Steve Jalsevac Steve Jalsevac Follow Steve
By Steve Jalsevac

A little bit of humour now and then is a good thing.

Happy Thanksgiving to all our American readers.

Share this article

Featured Image
Building of the European Court of Human Rights.
Lianne Laurence


BREAKING: Europe’s top human rights court slaps down German ban on pro-life leafletting

Lianne Laurence
By Lianne Laurence

STRASBOURG, France, November 26, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – The European Court of Human Rights ruled Thursday that a German regional court violated a pro-life activist’s freedom of expression when it barred him from leafleting in front of an abortion center.

It further ruled the German court’s order that Klaus Gunter Annen not list the names of two abortion doctors on his website likewise violated the 64-year-old pro-life advocate’s right to freedom of expression.

The court’s November 26 decision is “a real moral victory,” says Gregor Puppinck, director of the Strasbourg-based European Center for Law and Justice, which intervened in Annen’s case. “It really upholds the freedom of speech for pro-life activists in Europe.”

Annen, a father of two from Weinam, a mid-sized city in the Rhine-Neckar triangle, has appealed to the Strasbourg-based European Court of Human Rights at least two times before, Puppinck told LifeSiteNews.

“This is the first time he made it,” he said, noting that this time around, Annen had support from the ECLJ and Alliance Defense Fund and the German Pro-life Federation (BVL). “I think he got more support, better arguments and so I think this helped.”

The court also ordered the German government to pay Annen costs of 13,696.87 EUR, or 14,530 USD.

Annen started distributing pamphlets outside a German abortion center ten years ago, ECLJ stated in a press release.

His leaflets contained the names and addresses of the two abortionists at the center, declared they were doing “unlawful abortions,” and stated in smaller print that, “the abortions were allowed by the German legislators and were not subject to criminal liability.”

Annen’s leaflets also stated that, “The murder of human beings in Auschwitz was unlawful, but the morally degraded NS State allowed the murder of innocent people and did not make it subject to criminal liability.” They referred to Annen’s website,, which listed a number of abortionists, including the two at the site he was leafleting.

In 2007, a German regional court barred Annen from pamphleteering in the vicinity of the abortion center, and ordered him to drop the name of the two abortion doctors from his website.

But the European Court of Human Rights ruled Thursday that the German courts had "failed to strike a fair balance between [Annen’s] right to freedom of expression and the doctor’s personality rights.”

The Court stated that, “there can be no doubt as to the acute sensitivity of the moral and ethical issues raised by the question of abortion or as to the importance of the public interest at stake.”

That means, stated ECLJ, that “freedom of expression in regard to abortion shall enjoy a full protection.”

ECLJ stated that the court noted Annen’s leaflets “made clear that the abortions performed in the clinic were not subject to criminal liability. Therefore, the statement that ‘unlawful abortions’ were being performed in the clinic was correct from a legal point of view.”

As for the Holocaust reference, the court stated that, “the applicant did not – at least not explicitly – equate abortion with the Holocaust.”  Rather, the reference was “a way of creating awareness of the more general fact that law might diverge from morality.”

The November 26 decision “is a quite good level of protection of freedom of speech for pro-life people,” observed Puppinck.

First, the European Court of Human Rights has permitted leafleting “in the direct proximate vicinity of the clinic, so there is no issue of zoning,” he told LifeSiteNews. “And second, the leaflets were mentioning the names of the doctors, and moreover, were mentioning the issue of the Holocaust, which made them quite strong leaflets.”

“And the court protected that.”

Annen has persevered in his pro-life awareness campaign through the years despite the restraints on his freedom.

“He did continue, and he did adapt,” Puppinck told LifeSiteNews. “He kept his freedom of speech as much as he could, but he continued to be sanctioned by the German authorities, and each time he went to the court of human rights. And this time, he won.”

ECLJ’s statement notes that “any party” has three months to appeal the November 26 decision.

However, as it stands, the European Court of Human Rights’s ruling affects “all the national courts,” noted Puppinck, and these will now “have to protect freedom of speech, recognize the freedom of speech for pro-lifers.”

“In the past, the courts have not always been very supportive of the freedom of speech of pro-life,” he said, so the ruling is “significant.”

As for Annen’s pro-life ministry, Pubbinck added: “He can continue to go and do, and I’m sure that he does, because he always did.”  

Share this article

Featured Image
A vibrant church in Africa. Pierre-Yves Babelon /
Pete Baklinski Pete Baklinski Follow Pete

, ,

‘Soft racism’: German Bishops’ website attributes African Catholics’ strong faith to simplemindedness

Pete Baklinski Pete Baklinski Follow Pete
By Pete Baklinski

GERMANY, November 26, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) --  The only reason the Catholic Church is growing in Africa is because the people have a “rather low level” of education and accept “simple answers to difficult questions” involving marriage and sexuality, posited an article on the official website of the German Bishops' Conference posted yesterday. The article targeted particularly Cardinal Robert Sarah of Guinea, the Vatican's prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and ardent defender of Catholic tradition.

First Things blogger Leroy Huizenga, who translated a portion of the article, criticized the article's view as “soft racism.”

In his article, titled “The Romantic, Poor Church,” editor Björn Odendahl writes: 

So also in Africa. Of course the Church is growing there. It grows because the people are socially dependent and often have nothing else but their faith. It grows because the educational situation there is on average at a rather low level and the people accept simple answers to difficult questions (of faith) [sic]. Answers like those that Cardinal Sarah of Guinea provides. And even the growing number of priests is a result not only of missionary power but also a result of the fact that the priesthood is one of the few possibilities for social security on the dark continent.

Huizenga said that such an article has no place on a bishops’ conference website. 

“We all know that the German Bishops' Conference is one of the most progressive in the world. But it nevertheless beggars belief that such a statement would appear on the Conference's official website, with its lazy slander of African Christians and priests as poor and uneducated (Odendahl might as well have added ‘easy to command’) and its gratuitous swipe at Cardinal Sarah,” he wrote. 

“Natürlich progressives could never be guilty of such a sin and crime, but these words sure do suggest soft racism, the racism of elite white Western paternalism,” he added. 

African prelates have gained a solid reputation for being strong defenders of Catholic sexual morality because of their unwavering orthodox input into the recently concluded Synod on the Family in Rome. 

At one point during the Synod, Cardinal Robert Sarah urged Catholic leaders to recognize as the greatest modern enemies of the family what he called the twin “demonic” “apocalyptic beasts” of “the idolatry of Western freedom” and “Islamic fundamentalism.”

STORY: Cardinal Danneels warns African bishops to avoid ‘triumphalism’

“What Nazi-Fascism and Communism were in the 20th century, Western homosexual and abortion ideologies and Islamic fanaticism are today,” he said during his speech at the Synod last month. 

But African prelates’ adherence to orthodoxy has earned them enemies, especially from the camp of Western prelates bent on forming the Catholic Church in their own image and likeness, not according to Scripture, tradition, and the teaching magisterium of the Church. 

During last year’s Synod, German Cardinal Walter Kasper went as far as stating that the voice of African Catholics in the area of Church teaching on homosexuality should simply be dismissed.

African cardinals “should not tell us too much what we have to do,” he said in an October 2014 interview with ZENIT, adding that African countries are "very different, especially about gays.” 

Earlier this month Belgian Cardinal Godfried Danneels, instead of praising Africa for its vibrant and flourishing Catholicism, said that African prelates will one day have to look to Europe to get what he called “useful tips” on how to deal with “secularization” and “individualism.” 

The statement was criticized by one pro-family advocate as “patronizing of the worst kind” in light of the facts that numerous European churches are practically empty, vocations to the priesthood and religious life are stagnant, and the Catholic faith in Europe, especially in Belgium, is overall in decline.

Share this article


Customize your experience.

Login with Facebook