Because wonders shall never cease in this country of ours, a woman has been arrested for demanding to be paid in order to breastfeed her own child.
Faith Nyokabi, 25, from Kiganjo in the outskirts of Thika town, is said to have abandoned her four-month-old baby and refused to breastfeed her unless she was paid Sh100,000 by her husband.
She reportedly abandoned the toddler at her matrimonial home in Kiganjo last week and pleas to have her return and take care of the baby were futile as she made a demand Sh100,000.
Nyokabi’s distraught husband, Charles Kirii, 36, said he was called by a neighbor on August 1, telling him that his wife had left their infant in the house.
Kirii, a casual labourer in several construction sites, rushed home and found the baby under the care of neighbours. He was told that the baby had been abandoned immediately he left for work and had been crying endlessly.
He tried reaching his wife on phone but his calls were unanswered.
“When my wife finally took my calls, she informed me that she was okay but wasn’t coming back to me unless I gave her 100,000 shillings. I pleaded with her to come and breastfeed. That’s when she revealed that her mother had actually taken her to a local hospital and had her injected with a drug to dry out the milk,” he lamented.
He reported the matter at the Thika Children’s Offices and was referred to Murang’a Children’s offices.
He said that he did not have any previous quarrels with his wife but his mother-in-law kept making frequent financial demands.
Thika Children’s Officer Lina Mwangi said the woman will be charged with child neglect and denying a child protection and care which is an offence in the children’s Act.
“I have advised the father to look for a temporary caregiver who can take care of the infant under his watch as the court makes a ruling,” she said.
The irony of it all is that the incident happened during the World Breastfeeding Week.