Police in Thika are questioning the parents of a 10-month-old baby who was admitted at Thika Level Five hospital last month with 14 needles lodged in her body.
The two were arrested at the hospital yesterday. Officers also booked the child and her three siblings at Macheo Children’s Home where they shall stay until police conclude investigations into how the needles found their way into the child’s body.
According to Thika children’s officer Rebecca Kariuki, the mother could be holding vital information that could reveal what happened.
“The mother is the only one who can give information but she is not willing to open up. We shall book the child into a protection home to allow police conduct investigations,” said Kariuki.
She also confirmed that the child’s other three siblings aged 17, 12 and 6 had been rescued from their parents home in Kiganjo and shall be staying at the same children’s home with their sister as police question their parents.
Thika level five medical superintendent Dr Joseph Wanjohi said the minor was admitted to the hospital about 10 days ago bearing symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting.
During her stay a the hospital, doctors conducted an X-Ray and discovered 14 sewing needles had been lodged in the child’s backside.
They managed to remove 13 of the nails with the 14th at risk of damaging her nerves and blood vessels if removed.
“There’s no point in removing it. It cannot harm her. We shall, however, continue monitoring her from the home,” said Dr Wanjohi.
The child’s mother, Jacinta Ndung’e, pleaded her innocence saying she has been taking care of the child alone at her Kiganjo home. She, however, could not explain how the needles found their way into her child’s body.
“I am innocent. The child is mine, can I do that to my own child? Did I just pick on this one to hate and not either of the other siblings? It’s not fair that they want to arrest me but let them go ahead,” lamented Ms Ndung’e moments before she was arrested.
The child’s father, Isaac Gichura, said he always left his daughter with her mother while leaving for work every morning.
“I was shocked to learn of the needles in her body and wondered how they got inside. Our extended family in also in shock. What evil thing is this?” posed Gichura.
The baby, who is said to be still breastfeeding, shall only be released from the children’s home once her mother is declared innocent.
“A child’s safety comes first. She shall be kept in a safe home even if she is still breastfeeding. She shall only be released to the mother once she’s declared innocent,” said Ms Kariuki.