On Friday, 14 September 2018 an 18-year-old mother from Mfekayi boarded a taxi from Hlabisa Hospital to Mtubatuba town after having given birth at hospital. It is alleged that a woman in her thirties who was sitting behind the mother, requested to carry the one-day-old new born baby girl. The mother agreed as she appeared to be sympathetic.
On their arrival at the Mtubatuba taxi rank, the said woman asked the mother to buy airtime from a nearby shop and promised to wait for her. On her return from the shop the mother realised that the woman and her new-born baby were nowhere to be found. The matter was reported to Mtubatuba police station for investigation and the docket was transferred to the KwaMsane FCS Unit for further investigation.
On Monday night, the Mtubatuba community proceeded to Makhambane area after receiving information of a women who was found in possession of a new-born baby that was not hers. Police were contacted and the woman was handed over to the police who placed her under arrest. After the baby was found and the suspect was positively identified by the mother of the stolen baby as the same person who stole her child. The suspect (35) was charged for kidnapping and will appear in the Mtubatuba Magistrates Court tomorrow. The baby was taken to a health facility for a check-up.
Police are appealing to parents to take extra precautions when dealing with strangers. Parents should not hand over their babies to strangers. They must ensure that at all times their eyes are on their babies. Police are concerned with the high incidence of cases where parents hand over their new born babies to people who befriend them at taxi ranks and business premises.