A teenager has been arrested by the police in Lagos State after she tied her baby's mouth and dumped her is a bush.
The Lagos State Police Command has arrested a 19-year-old secondary school leaver, Ayomide Adebayo after she allegedly tied the mouth and nose of her two-months-old baby and left in her to die in a bush.
Punch reports that Adebayo was apprehended in the Ikorodu area of the state after she dumped the baby because, according to her, she could not take care of the child.
The suspect, an orphan, has reportedly told the police that she was impregnated by one Martins Tewogbade, an apprentice who lives in the Bariga area of the state and that she gave birth to the baby on April 30, 2017, at a private hospital in the neighbourhood.
It was learned that Tewogbade’s parents rejected the baby after Adebayo put to bed and she had to relocate with the child to a friend’s house in the Igbode area of Ogun State.
While there, Adebayo approached a worker at a Cherubim and Seraphim Church in the town sometime in May 2017 and begged the woman to take custody of the child.
The baby was in the care of the church worker who has been identified as Mrs. Joke Fatai, until Saturday, June 10, when Adebayo went to withdraw the infant and took her to Ikorodu where she allegedly tied the baby’s mouth and nose and dumped her in the bush and returned to Bariga, where she told people that the child had died.
However, the baby was found by some members of a vigilance group in the early hours of the following day and was later reunited with Fatai while residents of Igbode eventually traced Adebayo to Bariga where she was arrested.
A resident of Bariga, Yusuf Tolagbe, narrated that an angry crowd wanted to beat up Adebayo but were restrained by members of a child rights organization in the area, Child Protection Network.
“Ayomide’s mother died shortly after giving birth to her. Her father’s whereabout is unknown. She was living with an elderly man and has finished her secondary school education
Last year, the man observed that she was pregnant. After prodding her, she said it was Martins (Tewogbade), an apprentice, that impregnated her.
But the boy’s parent did not accept the pregnancy, claiming that it belonged to a taxi driver, who they usually saw her with
She left the community after she gave birth in April and came back on Sunday, telling people that the baby was dead. It was when the woman (Fatai) and some people came on Monday with the baby that we discovered she was lying.”
The Coordinator of Child Protection Network, Toyin Okanlawon, said the case was reported to the police at the Bariga Division and Adebayo and Tewogbade's mother were arrested and later transferred to the Gender Unit of the Lagos State Police Command’s Headquarters in Ikeja, Lagos.
“The babysitter explained that she saw the mother back the baby carelessly and corrected her. She later came to meet the woman to help her take care of the baby.
The woman took care of the baby and Ayomide till June 10 when she carried the baby to the bush in Ikorodu. She tied her mouth and nose in an attempt to kill her, but the vigilantes saw the baby in the bush at night and rescued her.
The boy did not deny to the police that he impregnated the girl. Presently, both of them are at the police command. The baby has been handed over to Martin’s mother for care,” Okanlawon said.
The State Police Public Relations Officer [PPRO], ASP Olarinde Famous-Cole who confirmed the incident, said the police would work with the state government to ensure the safe custody of the baby, while Adebayo and Tewogbola are under investigations.
“For now, we cannot confirm that she attempted to kill the baby. She said she just dropped her in the bush. It is possible she wanted to abandon her and run away.
We are still investigating and a test has to be conducted to determine her mental state. We will look for a guardian who can take care of the child. It may be a close relative or an institution made available by the state. The boy is also under investigation.”
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