A 60-year-old man who said he’s a pastor, Simon Dike, and three other persons were, yesterday, arraigned before an Ebute-Metta Chief Magistrate Court in Lagos, for allegedly selling a month and 18-day-old baby boy for N60,000.
Three men were yesterday arraigned before an Ebute-Metta Chief Magistrate Court for allegedly selling a month-old baby for N60,000.
The accused persons are Simon Dike, 60, who claimed to be pastor, Joy Uzochukwa, 27, the mother of the baby; Margaret Obinwa, 49, an auxiliary nurse and Chibuzor Ogbonna, 50, who was said to be the father of the baby.
The baby’s father is facing a two-count charge of conspiracy in human trafficking and selling of a baby, while the auxiliary nurse, Obinwa is facing a one-count charge of purchasing the baby, and Dike is also facing a two-count charge of human trafficking and failure to use all reasonable means to prevent the commission of the offence by the mother of the baby and the auxiliary nurse.
The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Police prosecutor, ASP Henry Obiazi said “all the accused persons are residents of Odongunyan, Ikorodu and the crime was committed on January 4, a day after the baby was born, at De-Ifes Medical Centre, Odogunyan, Ikorodu, Lagos.”
Obiazi told the court further that Uzochukwa went to meet Obinwa to help her abort the pregnancy as an auxiliary nurse but she encouraged her not to abort but sell the baby, adding that Obinwa then introduced Uzochukwa to Dike, who wanted to buy the baby, as he has has been married for 28 years without a child.
The prosecutor said that Uzochukwa signed an undertaking not to demand for the baby after collecting the money, which she accepted the offer.
“Uzochukwa left Ogbonna who impregnated her because he didn’t take care of her and married another man, called Kingsley, who later hatched the plan to sell the baby boy to the men of Oodua Peoples’ Congress, OPC who later reported the case to the police,” the prosecutor added.
The Chief magistrate, Miss S.O Solebo, who presided over the case granted Uzochukwa and Dike bail in the sum of N100, 000 each with a responsible surety in like sum, while Obinwa and Ogbonna were granted bail in the sum of N200, 000 each with two sureties in like sum, and ordered that the baby should be taken to Lagos State Motherless Babies home in Victoria Island, Lagos, while Uzochukwa should only be permitted to see the baby under the supervision of the matron of the Home.
She then adjourned the case till March 13 for further hearing.