A man and his wife, Mr. and Mrs. Godwin Eze, have been handed over to the police for alleged sale of babies in Calabar, the Cross River State capital.
The couple were apprehended and handed over to the police at the General Hospital in Calabar by the State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Inyang Asibong, following a tip-off.
Asibong, who made this disclosure on Friday to Southern City News, said the accused persons had been operating from a shop within the premises of the hospital along Mary Slessor Avenue in Calabar since 2011.
She said the shop was secretly used for trafficking activities, adding that the suspects sold male and female children for N200, 000 and N150,000 respectively. The commissioner said the hospital management carried out series of investigations after the tip-off on the matter before apprehending the couple.
She said, “The suspects have being trafficking in persons for about five years. The husband had lived in the General Hospital, Calabar, doing this with his wife. There had been suspicion before now, but nobody was really sure. “He has a shop here. Normally, the authorities think they go home at night, but they do not. What happens is that he deceitfully locks his door from outside when he is inside and when you see the padlock, you think there is nobody there. “He has been having these pregnant girls come around for a long time and presently he has five of them at the same time. The woman brings them to the labour ward and when they want to deliver, she claims they are her husband’s sisters. But at some point when it became obvious she was lying, she started delivering the girls by herself in an un-conducive environment in the hospital unknown to anyone. “The man admitted to the act. We found out that the man has been doing this for five years now. They sell a male child for N200,000 and the female for N150,000.”
She said it was the investigation after the tip-off that led to the arrest of the couple. The state Police Public Relations Officer, Irene Ugbo, however, said she was not aware of the matter. But Southern City News learnt that the arrested couple were being detained and investigated by officials in the Criminal Investigation Department of the State Police Command in Calabar.