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24.10.2005 Crime & Punishment

Woman steals a day-old child

By GNA
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Widana (U/E), Oct. 24, GNA - The Bawku Police have mounted an intensive search for a 36-year-old woman, Hafisatu Awini for allegedly stealing a baby boy barely two hours after delivery on Thursday at the Widana Health Centre, near Bawku.

The baby has been re-united with the mother following the vigilance of Hafisatu's brother-in-law, who confronted her and took the child from her and sent it to the mother.

Sources at the Health Centre told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) that both families of the suspect and nursing mother had appealed to the Police for the matter to be settled at home without media publicity. According to the source, on Thursday at about 1700 hours one Fati Abugre was rushed to the Health Centre in labour and shortly after was delivered of a baby boy at about 1830 hours.

It said at about 1900 hours, Hafisatu took advantage of the non-availability of light at the Health Centre to pose as a Nurse on normal rounds to examine the mother and child. She recommended that the child had to be sent to another ward to take some drugs, which the mother obliged to.

After sometime had elapse and the child had not been returned for her to breastfeed it; the mother became alarmed and sent a relative had had called to visit her to go and inquire about the child's whereabouts. It was at this juncture that the mother realised that Hafisatu had taken the child away and word was immediately sent across the entire village and the security alerted at the Ghana-Togo border, which was a walking distance away.

The source said Hafisatu sent the child to her in-laws house where she requested for a motorbike to convey her to Togo, but this aroused the suspicion of one Ali, her brother-in-law, who had heard about a missing child and had not seen Hafisatu pregnant on her arrival from Togo some few weeks earlier.

This made him to confront Hafisatu, who gave the child to him and fled from the village.

In another development, a 45-year-old woman, who allegedly drank a poisonous substance believed to be DDT; died at the same Health Centre. As at the time of filing this report, the motive of her action was not known.

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