A newborn baby who disappeared from her crib in the Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital (RMSH) in the Northern Cape on Wednesday afternoon was located and found unharmed on Friday morning.
The incident drew widespread criticism, also because the police did not issue a statement until late Thursday afternoon in which they are asking for people’s help in locating the baby girl. By Thursday evening there was still no sign of the baby and the provincial department of health confirmed that a case of a missing baby had been lodged with the police.
Natasha Japhta (26) told News24 that she and her newborn daughter, Lezaane, were flown by air ambulance from De Aar to Kimberley on Saturday shortly after the girl’s birth so that Lezaane – who had suffered serious lung problems – could receive specialist treatment in the neonatal intensive care unit there. receive.
By Wednesday, little Lezaane’s condition had improved to such an extent that the hospital could discharge her.
By Wednesday at 16:00, Japhta was apparently busy with the last administration to be able to go home.
According to her, she told staff in the ward that she was leaving Lezaane in her cot first. When she returned, only the baby girl’s blankets were lying in the bed. She was without a trace.
Japhta says a woman who aroused suspicion, and who she occasionally noticed at the hall, popped up in her memory.
This woman apparently often sat in the waiting room in front of the K3 hall from which Lezaane disappeared. She was apparently wearing a pink dressing gown and her face was covered. The woman apparently had a miscarriage earlier.
After Lezaane’s disappearance, the dressing gown was apparently found under one of the machines at the front of the hall.
Lt. Col. Sergio Kock, police spokesperson, says a 21-year-old woman has been arrested. The police in Kimberley’s domestic violence, child protection and sexual offenses unit found the newborn baby – two days after her abduction – at around 09:00 at the suspect’s house in Greenpoint in Kimberley.
It is unclear whether this woman is the same person who noticed Japhta earlier at the hospital.
“The baby will undergo procedural medical observation and be reunited with her parents,” says Kock.
Lt. Gen. Koliswa Otola, Northern Cape police chief, thanked officers for “their relentless efforts” to find little Lezaane. She also praised the community for their help in locating the baby.