Aban­doned baby can be buried: MP

Manukau Courier - - FRONT PAGE - JARRED WIL­LIAMSON

The body of a new­born baby boy left aban­doned in a Ma¯ngere re­serve will be re­turned for burial af­ter nearly 10 months.

Com­mu­nity lead­ers will be able to ful­fil their pledge to hold a fu­neral for the boy whose mother was never iden­ti­fied.

Po­lice had ap­pealed for the mother to come for­ward but to no avail. Fi­nal foren­sic tests in May were un­able to pro­vide any fur­ther leads.

Ma¯ngere MP Aupito Wil­liam Sio says fi­nal ar­range­ments are still to be made, but a date could be set for late Septem­ber.

‘‘We’ve come back to them, in con­sul­ta­tion with the Ma¯ngere-O¯ta¯huhu Lo­cal Board, to say that we’re happy to ar­range the fi­nal fu­neral ser­vice.’’

The ser­vice will bring some clo­sure to the com­mu­nity, Sio says.

‘‘I would hope by go­ing pub­lic it will give [the par­ents] the op­por­tu­nity to come for­ward. We don’t need to know who they are, but they can par­tic­i­pate in the fi­nal ser­vice.

‘‘We are not mak­ing any judge­ment on them.’’

Once costs are known, there will be a pub­lic meet­ing to or­gan­ise the fi­nal de­tails.

The baby’s body was dis­cov­ered at a re­serve near Mona Ave Re­serve on Novem­ber 24 last year, wrapped in cloth­ing printed with the words ‘‘SAMOAN CULTUREOUR PRIDE AND JOY’’.

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