A trado-medical practitioner, Onalaja Olawale, is currently in police custody, explaining the sale of a 2-week-old baby for N136,000 at the Ipaja area of Lagos State.
The newborn was sold to a couple, Oluwakemi and Dele Ayogbile, who had been unable to achieve a pregnancy for the past 6 years.
Co-tenants of the Ayogbiles suspected a foul-play when they saw Oluwakemi with a newborn baby, because they had never seen her carry a pregnancy to term. They contacted the police and the bubble burst.
The Commissioner of Police for Lagos State, Fatai Owoseni, paraded the suspected before journalists yesterday.
The original mother of the baby, Idiat Babatunde, is completed her HND at the Federal Polytechnic, Offa, Kwara State, and was said to have dropped her baby with Olawale nearly a week after delivery so as to travel to Offa to go process documentations toward her NYSC deployment.
As soon as Idiat was gone, Olawale contacted Oluwakemi that a baby was available for adoption and demanded for N300,000. The later paid an initial payment of N136,000 and then picked up the baby. Olawale insisted Idiat gave approval for the sale of the baby and even collected an initial N70,000.
According to herbalist Olawale, “Mrs. Babatunde gave me the baby to take care of because my wife is also breastfeeding. We have been family friends. But when I discovered that taking care of two children at the same time was burdensome on my wife, who gave birth through caesarean, I decided to give the baby to a client who I have been giving concoction for child birth.
“I informed the baby’s biological mother before giving the baby out. I told her that the baby would be with the new mother for three months. I collected N130,000 from the new mother, Mrs. Oluwakemi Ayogbinle, and an additional N6,000 which I said would be used to process adoption forms at Alausa, Ikeja, to avoid any embarrassment. I even gave the biological mother N70,000 out of the money.
“The actual amount I told the new parents was N300,000. But they only paid N136,000.”
But Idiat denied knowledge of approval her baby for sale, saying she dropped the baby with Olawale for safekeeping until her return from school.
Oluwakemi agreed to buying the baby. According to her, “I have been taking herbs from Mr. Olawale since 2013 because of the incessant miscarriages. After several efforts to get pregnant proved abortive, my husband left our home last year.
“At a point, Olawale suggested I should adopt a baby. He called me on Monday to come for a baby. I decided to contact my husband because of the amount Olawale demanded. But my husband insisted that he must have documents to back up the adoption before he would take the baby. So, he brought N136,000 as part payment.”