Nurse implicates guard in theft of baby from hospital

Alfred Moselakgomo

Alfred Moselakgomo

An 18-year-old woman who was arrested for stealing a newborn baby boy at the Barberton Hospital has implicated a nurse and security guard in the matter.

Priscilla Ndimende, whose own baby died two weeks ago, allegedly posed as a doctor and stole the baby from the hospital on August 2.

The police said they received a tip-off about the missing baby from a community member.

The suspect allegedly confessed to the kidnapping and showed police a shallow grave where she had buried her own child.

"Ndimende confessed to the kidnapping," police spokesman Sibongile Nkosi said. "She also told police that a nurse and a security guard had helped her."

Police then applied for court order to exhume the baby.

Ndimende was arrested and appeared in court yesterday. She was remanded in custody and her case was postponed to August 21.

The Democratic Alliance has called on health MEC Fish Mahlalela to suspend the officials involved immediately until the police investigation is completed.

"It is unbelievable that a security guard was involved in this cowardly act," said DA health spokesman Anthony Benade. "It is worrying that no other security guard was on duty at the time to stop or at least report the crime."

He urged Mahlalela to investigate security arrangements at provincial hospitals. He also urged the MEC to investigate the use of private security companies.

"A criminal police clearance check should be done on all security personnel employed by the hospitals and clinics," Benade said.

"While it appears as if this is a blatant criminal act, unpredicted by anyone, every measure should be taken to keep such incidents from occurring again."