Baby fac­tory: Po­lice smash syn­di­cate

Daily Trust - - NEWS - From Vic­tor Sorokwu, As­aba

Two preg­nant teenagers and half a dozen chil­dren have been re­cov­ered from a baby fac­tory syn­di­cate run by a cou­ple and five oth­ers in Delta. Anam­bra, Akwa-Ibom and Cross River States.

Ac­cord­ing to Po­lice author­i­ties in Delta State, se­cu­rity in­for­ma­tion re­vealed that the cou­ple, Chi­diebere Udeag­bala and Nkiru Asouza op­er­ated a baby cell in As­aba, cap­i­tal of Delta State, where they re­ceived stolen and traf­ficked chil­dren.

With the tip-off, the cou­ple were ar­rested, con­fessed to the crime of child traf­fick­ing and led the Po­lice op­er­a­tives to Onit­sha, Anam­bra State, where one Mary Bassey Okon was ap­pre­hended in cus­tody of four sus­pected traf­ficked chil­dren aged be­tween 1-5 years.

The sus­pects fur­ther led the Po­lice op­er­a­tives to Akwa-Ibom State where one Ekaete Sun­day, Etieno Mary Bas­set, Stella John and Es­ther Ezekiel were ar­rested.

“Two ad­di­tional traf­ficked chil­dren of same age bracket were re­cov­ered. More so, two preg­nant girls, Mercy Atume and Chidimma John­son aged 18 years were also re­cov­ered from the sus­pects”, Delta State Com­mis­sioner of Po­lice, Al­kali Baba Us­man told jour­nal­ists.

Ac­cord­ing to CP Us­man, the sus­pects told the Po­lice that the preg­nant girls had agreed to de­liver the ba­bies and sell them to the syn­di­cate.

“The sus­pects stated that the two preg­nant girls were di­rected to them af­ter been var­i­ously im­preg­nated to en­able them nurse the preg­nancy with a view of sell­ing the ba­bies af­ter de­liv­ery”, the CP stated..

The CP said Chidinma John­son and six chil­dren were handed over to the Delta State Min­istry of Women Af­fairs, while Mercy Atume was given to her par­ents.

The state Po­lice Com­mand fur­ther ad­vised par­ents of stolen or miss­ing chil­dren in Akwa-Ibom and Cross River States to re­port to the Delta State Po­lice Com­mand with proof of Parent­age. The In­ter­na­tional Com­mit­tee of the Red Cross (ICRC), yes­ter­day trained of­fi­cers and per­son­nel of the Spe­cial Task Force on in­ter­na­tional Hu­man Rights laws to guide their op­er­a­tions in Plateau State.

The train­ing, which was con­ducted in Jos was meant to pro­mote the knowl­edge of rel­e­vant hu­man­i­tar­ian laws to guide and gov­ern the op­er­a­tions of the army and other se­cu­rity bod­ies, the Geneva con­ven­tion and im­prove first aid ex­er­cise to their med­i­cal per­son­nel.

Head of ICRC in Plateau State, Karl Heinz Moder said at the one-day train­ing that the ac­tiv­i­ties and op­er­a­tions of OPSH are based on the Nige­ria laws and in­ter­na­tional law and the ex­er­cise was to build the ca­pac­ity of the of­fi­cers on how to ap­ply the laws in their op­er­a­tions.

Moder said that in­ter­na­tional hu­man­i­tar­ian laws are guid­ing prin­ci­ple for the armed forces in their op­er­a­tions, know­ing and re­spect­ing those laws pro­vides more se­cu­rity for all in­clud­ing the arms bear­ers and the civil pop­u­lace and also make life easy.

In his re­mark, the STF Com­man­der, Ma­jor Gen­eral Tagbo Ude, said that the train­ing was apt be­cause of the com­plex na­ture of their task.

Pic Ikechukwu Ibe

From left: Me­dia Trust he­roes of the month Nathaniel Bi­van, ed­i­to­rial; Shuaibu Saliu, pro­duc­tion; Ab­dulrasheed Mayegun, fi­nance; El­iz­a­beth Jayawa, ad­min; Haruna Ibrahim, li­brar­ian; and Sham­sud­deen Sani Hus­saini, head ad­vert op­er­a­tions, af­ter re­ceiv­ing their awards at the 8th and 9th edi­tions of the cer­e­mony at Me­dia Trust Head­quar­ters in Abuja yes­ter­day.

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