The police in Polokwane have launched a massive search for a woman who dumped her baby soon after giving birth.
The one-day-old baby is a boy.
The baby was dumped at the taxi rank in the city near Pick n Pay Mall on Friday afternoon.
The woman, whose identity remains unknown, allegedly left the baby with a street vendor at the rank after saying that she was going to a nearby shop to buy milk for the baby.
The woman has not been seen since. The police were called to the rank to try and trace the woman.
"We have taken the baby to the children's ward at the Polokwane Provincial Hospital until the mother or relatives come forward to claim him," police spokesman Mohlaka Mashiane yesterday said.
He said the police were constructing an identikit of the mother with the help of the street vendor.
A case of child neglect had been opened and the police are asking anyone with information about the mother's whereabouts to contact the nearest police station.
Last month a Limpopo University student dumped a baby in a dustbin on campus after giving birth during the night.
She tried to conceal the pregnancy from her parents after her boyfriend denied fathering the baby.
Provincial department of health spokesman Phuti Seloba said it was not necessary for mothers to dump babies because his department, in conjunction with the South African Social Security Agency, would allocate grants to children who either had no parents or whose parents were poor.
Seloba said it was important for women to practise safe sex if they did not want to fall pregnant or contract sexually transmitted diseases.
"But, please don't dump or kill your babies," he pleaded.