A bus conductor Edet Asuquo from Calabar, who slapped his baby girl so hard she almost died has fled from his home in the Idi Araba area of Lagos State.
The baby girl Gift Asuquo was not the child Edet wanted, Edet had wanted a boy. The mother Rosemary Kingsley also an indigene of Calabar was dating Edet when she got pregnant. She then moved in with her boyfriend on Ayinla Street after delivering the baby.
Rosemary and Edet had frequent fights over the fact that his child was a girl and not a boy and even threatened to kill the baby.
One day on January 10th 2018 young gift was crying from hunger when the father slapped her and she convulsed and had to be rushed to the hospital.
PUNCH correspondents were told by a social worker that blood allegedly sprayed out the baby’s nose from the injury sustained and the handprint from the slap could still be seen on the baby’s face
It was at the hospital that staff reportedly called the Lagos State Office of the Public Defender and they contacted the Itire division police.
However, by the time police arrived at Edet’s house he had fled.
The social worker spoke on the events of the story, “We gathered that the two lovers were not married. She sold plantain chips, while the man was a bus conductor. They just met on the road and agreed to date each other. She became pregnant a few weeks into the relationship. At the initial stage, the man didn’t want to take responsibility for the pregnancy. But after she was delivered of the baby, he bowed to pressure and allowed both mother and child to move in with him. They lived in a shop.
“According to the woman, the baby was crying that morning while the father carried her. He started abusing the baby and saying a girl would not be useful to him because he wanted a boy. She said he slapped the baby. At that point, the baby started convulsing. It was the neighbours who compelled him to get drugs for the girl’s treatment. She was later taken to a hospital. The mark of the assault is visible on the child.
“When the matter got to our attention, we mobilised policemen to the house. However, we were told that he had escaped. The police have promised to get him arrested for assaulting the innocent baby. Even the mother was being maltreated by Edet; he seized her phone.”
Mrs. Olubukola Salami The Director of the OPD, stated the agency would ensure that the suspect faced the full wrath of the law.
“The rising trend in child abuse is alarming. Children are vulnerable and should be protected, not pummelled. The Lagos State Government will ensure the rights of children are protected and perpetrators who violate these rights, irrespective of status, are brought to book, no matter how long it takes,”
SP Chike Oti the state Police Public Relations Officer has verified the incident, stating that the Commissioner of Police, Edgal Imohimi, had ordered that the suspect be arrested.
He said, “The case was reported. The man slapped the baby and fled. We are looking for him. In fact, the CP, who detests abuse of children and domestic violence, has ordered the Divisional Police Officer to get him arrested. What he did is highly reprehensible and has no place in a modern society.”