July 22, 2024

Woman in NAPTIP’s custody for selling three-month-old baby


Ini Billie, Uyo

The National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), Uyo Zonal Command, Akwa Ibom State, on Wednesday, said she has a woman in its custody for selling her three months old baby.

Zonal Commander of the agency, Mrs Tina Ugwu stated that sales of babies in Akwa Ibom State is high while human trafficking is commonplace also in the state owing to its proximity to Cameroon.

Ugwu maintained that the woman sold her baby because she was confused about the paternity of the child, especially when her boyfriend denied paternity on claims that the child does not look like him.

“We have a case from DSS that we’re currently battling with. It is a transferred case that borders around the selling of a child.

“The mother of the child decided to sell her baby because she felt she was deceived. She had a son for a man who was her boyfriend who didn’t marry her.

“The son was with the man, she was living with him, but when she had the second baby, the man said the baby didn’t look like them and she had to tell him where she got the pregnancy from.

“She said at some point because of the maltreatment the man gave her, she was pressured to sleep with another man where she works. And that she wasn’t sure who was the father of the baby.

“So, she made efforts to get rid of the baby. She started looking for who will buy the baby. She got somebody that helped her to get a buyer.

“Some of them are in our custody. I kept on asking her, ‘how could you sell a baby of three months. The baby is in safe hands now.

“Human trafficking prevails in the state because it borders Cameroon, a very busy route. The second one is selling babies. Children are just sold as commodities,” she stated.

The NAPTIP boss revealed that some women are also made to get pregnant just for the babies to be sold, adding that the agency had in custody another person involved in the act.

She stated that the agency was handling a case where a man impregnated his girlfriend and sold off the baby without her knowledge, only for the mother of the child to be told that her baby was dead.

“The victim who was learning how to do hairdressing somewhere said her boyfriend impregnated her and she said he has done it before.

“When one of the pregnancies was due, they took her to the room, opened her up and brought out the child. And then they later bought a dead child and told her that her baby just died.

“She said the doctor called her and told her that the dead child wasn’t hers and that her child was a baby girl and not a boy.

“As wicked as there were, the boyfriend and whoever they collaborated with, after stitching her up, they never gave her paracetamol up till today. Now, she is complaining of complications. She was looking so malnourished when she came here.

“We’ve not been able to apprehend the boyfriend; that’s why we are looking for him. We have informed the Paramount Ruler and villagers in the community where the incident happened,” he explained.

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