IT IS a universal belief that money is the root of all evils in the world today. That probably explains why Jesus Christ described money as a god or mammon which many people prefer to worship other than their creator. He was very blunt in his warning against excessive love for money. In His words: “No one can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon,” (Matthew 6:24). Nigerians love and worship money and would do anything fair or foul to get it. The Nigerian society is not helping matters. It worships people who have stumbled into wealth without asking any question about the source of their wealth. Consequently, our value system has been turned on its head and this explains why the country is home to corruption, armed robbery, drug and human trafficking, product counterfeiting, advanced fee fraud, forgery, kidnapping, ritual sacrifices to make money and embezzlement, among other high profile crimes.
The list is getting longer. Today, people are selling babies to make money. The media are awash with reports, almost on a daily basis, of the discovery of homes where babies are made for sale. In the last few months, such homes have been discovered in Abeokuta, Ogun State, Ekiti, in Ekiti State, Uyo, in Akwa Ibom State and Asaba, in Delta State. In one of such homes, otherwise known as baby factories in Abeokuta, a lady from Abia State said she sold her baby at the factory for N100,000. When the police raided the factory on a tip-off, three pregnant women and five children were rescued. Elsewhere in Akute, Ifo local government area in Ogun State, eight pregnant women and some teenage girls were rescued during a police raid on another baby factory run by a middle-aged man and a 26 year-old woman. Angela Chigozie, one of the arrested suspects, who claimed she was running a herbal clinic, told journalists that she “sells babies to childless women for N300,000.” In a home in Asaba, 10 pregnant girls were found during a police raid. They claimed that the 40 year-old woman running the outfit promised to buy their babies for undisclosed amounts of money. The story was the same in all the homes raided by the police.
But the question is: Why would a woman or a young girl prefer to sell her baby after delivery? This is the poser for which Vincent Nzemeke of our Abuja Bureau office tried to find an answer in this week’s cover story entitled “Booming Baby Trade: A Worrisome Trend.” In the course of his investigation, Nzemeke sought the views of some experts who examined the various factors that could force men and women into baby trade. Their analyses are very revealing. You will enjoy it. Happy reading.
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— Apr. 21, 2014 @ 01:00 GMT