At the last count, three babies have been abandoned in different locations in Anambra state since the inception of Governor Willie Obiano’s administration including one in a dump site.
The last baby was dumped at a waste/refuse dump and was discovered by a street sweeper. The one-day old baby boy was left at a refuse dump in Nibo, Awka South local government area of Anambra state in the early hours of the fateful day.
The baby, wrapped in a sack and dropped in a receptacle of the Anambra State Waste Management Agency (ASWAMA) kept by the roadside, was picked by one Mrs Chinelo Nelleh, a street cleaner.
Nelleh said that she was discharging her duty around 6am when some children alerted her on the development.
Hear her: “Some children told me that there was strange object that is shaking in an ASWAMA bin. So, I went there and found that a newborn baby boy was wrapped inside a bag and dropped in the waste bin. I picked him and ran immediately to Nibo Maternity Home where he was promptly attended to.”
The matron of the maternity home, Mrs Edith Okoye, who explained that the baby is premature disclosed that she used an incubator and other relevant drugs on the baby which was brought with the umbilical cord on his body, adding that the baby was responding to treatment.
Also speaking, the Managing Director of the Anambra State Waste Management Agency, Mr Philip Chinwuba condemned the act as “crude” even as he commended the matron and nurses at the Nibo Maternity Home for their professionalism in handling the situation.
But in a show of love, the wife of the governor of Anambra State, Chief (Mrs) Ebelechukwu Obiano, at weekend adopted the dumped baby as “state baby’’ and named him “Baby Moses”.
Baby Moses is the third abandoned baby rescued under the two-year old administration of Governor Obiano, her husband, assuring that she would take full responsibility for the care and upkeep of the baby like the previous ones through her NGO, Caring Family Enhancement Initiative (CAFE).
Mrs Obiano, accompanied by the Women Affairs Commissioner, Dr (Mrs) Victoria Chukwuelu said it is a perfect Easter gift to Ndi Anambra when she visited the baby to ascertain the health status of little Baby Moses at Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu Teaching Hospital, Amaku, Awka, Anambra State.
Obiano’s wife said: “As the mother of six million Ndi Anambra, it is my responsibility to care and nurture the baby who may eventually turn-out to be governor of the state in future.
“On one hand, I condemn the act of abandoning the baby but in another breath, I want to commend her for wrapping the baby well and ensuring that he did not suffocate. Perhaps, she heeded my previous plea for mothers with unwanted babies to keep them where they can be seen and taken care of. They can drop them near Governor’s Lodge, Fire station or a hospital.”
Mrs. Obiano who expressed happiness that the baby she saw is healthy and well-taken care of by the teaching hospital, praised the professionalism of the doctors, nurses and management for sparing no effort and material in their response to ensure the survival of Baby Moses.
Earlier, Chief Medical Director, Chukwuemeka Odimegwu Ojukwu Teaching Hospital, Awka, Dr. Lawrence Ikeakor, said that they received Baby Moses in critical condition from agile State Sweepers but thanked God that he is responding to treatment. He revealed that the baby, who weighs 1.25 kilogramme, will remain in the incubator for two weeks when they expect that the weight would improve to 1.8kg.
Dr. Ikeakor commended the wife of the governor for her caring nature and visit to the hospital, as well as the Anambra State Government for providing the equipment necessary for treatment of cases like that of Baby Moses and others which according to him; “is assisting us in the effective discharge of our duties.”
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