The Cries From Public Drains

It could be a cry in response to a stinging from ‘soldier ants’ or a last breathe effort.At such screeming, some well meaning members of the public could be attracted.

The revelations is one,two, three, then a fourth.. Now,  a public discourse has ensued arising from every week stories of babies being abandoned on the streets,refused heaps and drainage channels that has inundated the airwaves and pages of newspapers.

The babies are often between one day and two weeks.  A self examination of what had gone wrong in the social interactive network among the people in the urban areas to cause this growing incidence of abandoned babies is been investigated.But the disconnect among family members, neighbour and a breakdown of the value system in the society has been attributed to this incidence.

  But it is manifest that the economic hardship that is been experienced by the people is compelling them to reject the responsibility that comes with fending for the delivered babies.Increasingly,one square meal is difficult to find on the table for most people.  

The jobs are not there,micro-businesses hardly strives because the incentives are near non-available or the information on how to access them is not known to the larger number of the population.A mother who can not feed herself can not feed a dependant.  

However, experts said that other factors contributes to this phenomena.The Assistant Director of the Family Support Health Centre, Elelenwo,in Rivers State,Mrs Ngozi Nwoke said when pregnant women come to the centre,health,social and economic history is obtained and kept but the service provided does not extend beyond the centre which makes it difficult to know what they do later.

 She also connected the act to promiscous lifestyle of women and teenage girl who may have been raped.This brings with it a social stigma or a hindrance to the business gains that comes with the promiscous living.The cases are common among teenage girl suggesting that parents are not paying adequate attention on their children.  While are capable to make a woman discard her baby.

 A sociologist, Dr. Steve Wordu, with the university of Port Harcourt said most women come experince mental condition at labour to make them discard their babies.An action they regret later but could not find the babies when they come back for them because they would have been picked up by the government or members of the public.  

 When a woman is not sure of the paternity of the expected child, fear that the child that is coming may not be accepted because the woman is not legally married.He also said the near absent of effective healthcare system and social workers worsen the situation.

The lack of watchfulness in the neighbourhood,poor health campaigns,congestions in the cities,low knowledge on how to enforvce health rights and obligations make the challenge enormous.  

A psychologist, Dr. Glory Amadi sees anxiety.low self concept,aggressive lfestyle and psycho-social influences on people force them into the act.He said if the situation is allowed to continued, there will be fear among people especially knowing that they could wake up the next morning to find a baby in the gutter,backyard or roadside, near the neighbourhood.

                
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Paternity Row: Man Throws 9-Month-Old Son Into Lagoon

  *’He Is Not  My Son, My Wife  Is A Flirt’

 

 It was an unbelievable  story as a 21-year-old man  narrates  to crack homicide detectives at the State Criminal Investigations Department  (SCID), Panti how he threw  his nine months old son into the Lagoon in Lagos State.

 

 Sule Salau from Ondo  State said his wife is a flirt and he sees no reason  to habour  and train a child whom he believes  is a product of his wife’s infidelity with her man friend.Salau  has no other alternative than to get rid of the child and continue his life rather  than allowing  the matter to bother  him.

Salau, an ex-convict  in an encounter with National Mirror in his police cell at SCID,  narrates  his story  which made him a guest of the police.

According to him, he met his wife Sarah in 2006 in Lagos where  they became friends  before she  packed her loads and join him  as his wife  without any formal  marriage.“Infact I don’t know her father  and mother  because  she said both died  before we met, I know that  she is from Ijaw area of River State but I know  some of the sisters who used to come to my house”, Salau said.

 

 


According to him, he was arrested in 2007 by the police when they were “raiding” combing the nooks and crannies of the Yaba  area in search of criminals.“I was charged to court and sentenced  to six months  imprisonment  and that  was when  my wife was pregnant and gave birth to a baby boy. One day she called me and  told me that the baby was not mine that the boy belongs  to one Alhaji so I asked her to take the baby away  but she refused  so we  continued to quarrel  over the matter”, he narrated.


“My wife is an hair dresser while I am a wood seller. We live at Popo  area of Yaba. So when I returned form the market  one day I asked her  to bring  the child and follow me and she did. In fact  I don’t know what happened to me  (he paused and  pretended as though he has a mental problem.)

“What happened to you?” National Mirror enquired? In fact, I don’t know I used to have mental problem. Sometimes I used to feel as though kokoro (maggot) is in my brain  and has been disturbing  me”, he said. When asked whether he is mentally ill, Salau replied: Yes sir.

He continued his story at National Mirror’s prompting:“We  trek to the river side at Iddo area, I  collected the child and  threw him into the river that was about  12.20p.m. in the night and my wife  ran away weeping”, Salau stated.

 

Police said Sarah,  the wife, could not bear the loss of her child and she went to  report the matter to  Salau’s brother who went to lodge  the report at  the Sabo Police Station where the suspect  was  arrested  and detained for interrogation.

 

 

 

XAVIER  NDAH reported the’ Paternity Row: Man Throws 9-Month-Old Son Into Lagoon’ on National Mirror-8th April 2008.

 

 

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2 thoughts on “The Cries From Public Drains

  1. It is not the young girls that are to blame, neither is it their parents. The socila structure should have preventive measures to protect vulnerable families. Check this out: parents no education, inflation biting on their subsistence way of living, father a vulcanizer (thank god some tradeable skill), mother sells pure water.

    Okay no clue about family planning so the babies come as frequently as the couple sleep on the same bed. 7 mouths to feed after 5 years…….or maybe 4 years because they had twins! Then comes the anguish of having to work longer hours to make ends meet.

    Vulcanizer stays out till 9pm when it is dangerous to walk the streets; pure water sales and occassionally ‘down below’ to randy city dwellers to supplement what husband brings home. Then another child comes, chei! What will they do? Nowhere to get free healthcare for the baby, no support of even one tin of baby food.

    As the babies come, the distance between this family and the extended family ‘extends’ a bit more, as everybody is constantly reliving Shehu Shagari’s ‘austerity measures’. tell me it is the responsibility of this family to make sure that child has a life.

    At least at the dustbin, someone will pick the baby up, take her to the hospital as an abandoned child and the child will recieve care…..AND FOOD free!When our professionals garnish the truth with all sorts of big big grammar, I wonder. Yes I wonder: Am I the most intelligent person involved, or are these people just pretending not to see the truth. Blaming it on promiscuity is a farce.

    There are very few adults that do not have sex, very few. Empowering the individual elevates him/her above the sex-for-survival level. Until we do that, the worst is yet to come!

  2. I understand the need to feed a family. I understand having too many mouths to feed. But, to say it is all from women being too promiscuous is wrong. It takes a woman AND A MAN to create these babies.

    Rape is not promiscuous behavior. It is sexual violence that is forced. When only the women suffer the consequences of a rape(becoming pregnant and responsible to take care of a child) these horrible situations continue. There must be heavy consequences for the men involved in rape or force. They must have to pay money to support the children they create.

    Every child deserves to be born out of love…not rape and not sex-for-survival. It is not the child’s fault for being born. There should be safe houses for these children to be raised if they cannot be raised with their parents.

    To throw away those babies is to spit in God’s face. Every life has value and has meaning. What this country needs is education and knowledge to prevent too many births.

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