Cape Town – A woman in her early 20s has reportedly been arrested after she allegedly kidnapped a four-day baby boy and tried to register the infant at a KwaZulu-Natal hospital.
Reports said that the woman’s attempts were foiled by “quick thinking staff at the hospital.
The incident reportedly occurred earlier this week.
According to News24, the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health said the woman had approached the baby’s mother in the Mtubatuba town centre earlier this week. and asked if she could make an urgent call on the young mother’s cellphone.
The mother, however, responded that did not have airtime.
“The woman then gave the mother some money and offered to hold her baby, while sending the mother to get airtime. The mother, who is in her early 20s, duly complied,” the report quoted Health MEC Nomagugu Simelane as saying.
However, when the mother returned, the woman had disappeared with the baby.
The mother quickly alerted the police and also shared her experience on Facebook.
Times Live reported that later that day, the suspected baby snatcher went to Hlabisa Hospital to obtain a hospital card for the infant, claiming to be the biological mother.
“When nurses from the outpatients and maternity departments questioned her about the infant and the circumstances surrounding its delivery, it became clear her version was contradictory. She was told to return to the hospital where she had given birth,” the report said.
In the meantime, hospital management contacted the police and found out an infant had been snatched.
According to IOL, the next day the alleged baby thief came back to Hlabisa Hospital.
“The staff pretended to assist her, while deliberately delaying the ‘administrative process,’ they called the police, who arrived shortly thereafter, along with the baby’s real mother,” said the report.
The woman was arrested.
She was also allegedly found with the mother’s cellphone.
The department said the baby was taken to hospital and treated for a minor ailment.
Compiled by Betha Madhomu