Father of baby born in Soweto taxi banned from clinic for 'intimidation'

A man was banned from a Soweto clinic after 'demanding answers from nurses' and 'violating the privacy of other mothers in labour'.
A man was banned from a Soweto clinic after 'demanding answers from nurses' and 'violating the privacy of other mothers in labour'.
Image: 123RF/vitalinka

A father whose child was born in a minibus taxi has been banned from Chiawelo Clinic in Soweto for allegedly intimidating a nurse, who he accused of refusing to help the mother of his child.

“A restraining order has been obtained against the father as he continues to patrol the clinic premises, parking area and - worse - the labour ward, looking for the nurse who attended to his girlfriend and child - and violating the privacy of other mothers in labour,"  said Lerato Madumo-Gova, spokesperson for Young Nurses Indaba Trade Union (YNITU).

SowetaLIVE's sister publication TimesLIVE reported in December that the baby was alive and healthy after being born in a taxi.

A video of the woman after she had given birth went viral. In the video, a man can be heard shouting about a nurse allegedly refusing to attend to the mother.

“I am not fighting - I am fighting her statement that she won't help her because they deliver at the labour ward, not inside the car. The baby is already here ... and she’s telling us that she won’t help her!” he shouted.

The provincial health department at the time denied that the nurse refused to help.

“The patient was received by the security guard at the labour ward, who informed the nurses that there was a patient who delivered in the car. The nurse went to the car where the patient delivered to assess [her] condition,” said Mogeru Morewane, chief director of the Johannesburg health district.

After ascertaining that the placenta was still inside the mother, the nurse went back inside to collect medical instruments.

The union said the decision to ban the man was made after an incident on December 12.  “The father of the child came to the clinic with eight other men, demanding answers from nurses,” said Madumo-Gova.

The union said it advocated for "superior nursing care at all times", but disapproved of anyone abusing or intimidating health care providers or ignoring formal complaints processes already in place.

Nearly a month since the incident, no settlement had been reached with the family. 

"The family called the facility manager, who advised them to lodge a formal complaint in writing so that the matter may be ... investigated accordingly. Without any written complaint to the facility on that day, the family escalated the matter to the MEC of health in Gauteng and to media houses, which started contacting the clinic."