Abandoned baby safe after smelly swamp rescue
A FIVE-day-old baby girl was rescued by a Kwazakhele police officer in the nick of time from a tightly fastened plastic bag, believed to have been tossed into a swamp early yesterday.
Captain Juan Roberts, 39, battled his way through a deep swamp in Mavusa Road, New Brighton, after he was alerted by community members who had heard a baby‘s cries.
Roberts said he searched the waist-deep swamp for nearly 10 minutes before he eventually found the baby, wrapped in newspaper in a plastic bag. “I was passing Mavusa Road when members of the public stopped me and said there was a child stuck in the swamp.
I decided to walk through the smelly, muddy swamp and look for the baby, who was still crying. “I couldn‘t find her for about 10 minutes and she eventually stopped crying.
I got so scared. I searched everywhere between the reeds. I was about to give up when I decided to look in the two Shoprite plastic packets that were lying there.
“One packet had rubbish in it and when I looked in the other I realised it was the baby. The bag was so tightly fastened it was actually swollen. I had to tear it open.”
He said the naked baby had been wrapped in a newspaper. “One of the members of the public had a blanket so I wrapped her in it and tapped her on her bottom to get her to cry because I thought it might be too late.
When she cried I was relieved and I held her tightly against me for her to get my warmth.
Then we rushed her to Dora Nginza Hospital.” He said the baby could not have been there for very long – and might have been tossed into the reeds yesterday morning – because her skin still looked fine and she looked as if she was well fed.
Roberts said the plastic bag had not been placed neatly between the reeds, but was upside down, indicating that it had been thrown in.
She must be about three to five days old because her navel hasn‘t healed yet.
“I‘m so glad she‘s okay. I think it‘s so inhuman for a baby to just be thrown away like a piece of rubbish. Rather have an abortion before you get to the late stages, or do things the right way and hand the baby over for adoption.
“There are always pigs and dogs at the swamp; they could‘ve just gone in and eaten her up.” Roberts, who has three children of his own, said the baby girl had crept into his heart because she made him think of his own daughter. “
Some people are praying to have a child of their own, yet you get people who just throw their babies away.” He said it was not the first time he had rescued a baby.
“A couple of years ago I rescued a baby in Salt Lake. It was the same situation as this one.” Police spokesman Inspector Hazel Mqala said a case of abandonment of a child had been opened at the New Brighton police station.
“Since nobody knows whose child it is, the captain gave the baby his name, Juan.” The baby is in a place of safety and the identity of the mother is still unknown
Woman throttles her newborn
A 26-year-old woman was arrested on Tuesday morning for allegedly throttling her newborn baby boy in Hillbrow, Johannesburg police said.
The woman's badly-bruised baby was found in a toilet cubicle at the Hillbrow clinic, moments after he was born late on Monday night, said Captain Bhekizizwe Mavundla.
"Allegations are that the suspect was at the clinic on corners of Smit and Claim streets to give birth. She then disappeared from the nurses' view and went to the toilet, where she gave birth."
A security guard at the clinic is said to have found the baby and alerted the nurses on duty.
"On examining the baby, nurses found marks on his body and around the neck and that raised suspicion of tampering with the life of the child. Police were then called to the scene."
Vince R replied:
Overseas readers will see this article as an isolated incident.
This is not the case, for example, in Berea there is a charity called "hole in the wall" which is a purpose built baby bin inside a wall surrounding a church property in Berea.
Mothers can "dump" their new born infants if they do not have the wherewithall to care for them.
There is an alarm in the bin that sounds any new arrival and the baby is quickly rescued. The charity was set up in response to all the dead baby bodies that were being found inside trash cans in and around this cesspit of JHB.
I know, because I adopted the baby bin as a charity project when I still lived and worked in JHB - (before I could stomach SA no longer)
I raised upwards of R10,000for this cause.
Gee, I wonder if Black Coffee has ever been there?
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