A cross-section of men in the Federal Capital Territory has said that the sperm donation business in the country is not lucrative.
In separate interviews on Monday in Abuja, they said selling sperm was less profitable in Nigeria when compared to other countries.
According to Kalu Ekene, a lawyer, the procedure of donating sperm is stressful, and when compared with the money, it is a waste of time.
“The procedure is ridiculous. I was told I would be paid N150,000 for each donation, but this will be after I have successfully fulfilled all medical requirements,” explained Mr Ekene.
He said donors must undergo medical examinations such as HIV, syphilis, hepatitis B and C, sickle cell, and some other sexually transmitted diseases before they can sell their sperms.
“The money for the test and check-up was more than what I will be paid,” noted Mr. Ekene. “I found it to be a waste of time. Sperm bankers in Nigeria should work on the payment,” he advised.
Patrick Akpan, a civil servant, said after passing all the requirements, he was asked to remain anonymous.
“If I am going to receive that amount of money, I should be able to know who I am giving my sperm to. What if it is the only child I will be giving away?” Mr. Akpan pointed out. “It is not worth the unknown problems in the future.”
He decried that there are no laws backing sperm donation procedures in Nigeria and advised donors to “think this through before becoming a sperm donor in the country.”
Yakubu Tobias, a mechanic, said he was disqualified from donating his sperm because most sperm banks were not interested in donors who were not at least five feet, nine inches tall.
“I was asked to write an essay, or do a taped interview, to be shared with potential buyers, but in the end, my height disqualified me,” Mr. Tobias disclosed. “I do not see anything wrong with the pay, if I was able to donate like three times, that is cool money for me. It is better than going to ask my people for money or stealing.”
Isaac Shamaki, a gynaecologist, noted that the procedure for sperm donation was safe and effective.
Mr. Shamaki, however, explained that the most common reason some men cannot donate sperm is age.
Dapo Adeniran, an Abuja-based psychologist, said as simple as sperm donation could seem to be, some people find it stressful.
“Prospective parents can use a sperm sample from a friend, acquaintance, or family member, often called a ‘known’ or ‘directed’ donation, or arrange to use a heavily vetted stranger’s sample through a sperm bank or fertility clinic,” stated Mr Adeniran.
“Even decades after these practices have become common, many of those who opt for sperm donation are still consistently surprised by all the ways it can shape the family.”