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BABY CREMATED WITHOUT FAMILY CONSENT

By: Kelvin Chiringa

A Walvis Bay couple learnt that their baby had been cremated when they had done all preparations to bury him.

The baby was one of the twins born on 8 August 2021 at the Walvis State Hospital.

According to the mother, Sandra Ndjako, the other twin, who was a girl, died soon after birth, and the family allowed the hospital to cremate her.

The second one survived and appeared to have been doing well but later died on Monday this week.

The family hired a funeral parlour to process the burial only to be told when they went to collect the baby that he had been cremated as well without their permission.

Ndjao’s sister, Rosalia Hipondoka said the hospital was given permission to cremate the girl because the twins were prematurely born.

“She and her boyfriend gave the hospital the right to cremate the baby,” Hipondoka said.

“All procedures were followed in terms of organising the burial and the Walvis Bay Hospital was also to informed that there is going to be a burial.

Now on Tuesday when the funeral company went to the hospital to go get the body of the baby for the burial, they were informed that the baby was cremated,” Hipondoka said.

She added that the funeral company, Wasserfall Services, demanded to know why this was done without any consent.

The family said they realised a mortuary volunteer, identified as Anastacia Casta, had cremated their baby.

“Apparently she was on leave and when she came back to work, she found papers on the table saying that the baby needs to be cremated.

And without doing any paperwork, she decided herself to go cremate the child,” said Hipondoka.

The family approached the hospital authorities demanding to know why they allowed a volunteer to do such work without tight supervision.

The Villager has also seen some video footage in which authorities refused to be put on camera.

“Why would you allow someone to cremate someone’s kid without their consent?”  she charged.

She said the family has not been provided with the remains of the baby, “She said that the baby was under 1Kg and thus they had a right to cremate. It’s such a sad story!”

Ndjao said she has been left traumatised.

“They just told me that they can’t do anything about it because it’s already done. How can they tell me like that while they knew that I was there at the hospital on Tuesday?  

I told them that I want to bury my baby. It was organized, everything was well done. But later they called me telling me that the kid is burnt!

“With whose concern? They didn’t even tell me! No, I am going to sue them. They don’t have that right. They have totally broken me. They finished me! How can they do that? I spent days with that baby. I didnt even sleep. Sleepless nights. She was feeding from me. It’s like they killed her from start. I won’t leave it. I am going to sue them,” she said.

Health ministry executive director Ben Nangombe said nothing can be done from his office till the matter has been brought before him by the regional health directors.

‘’I will have to get the information surrounding the incident. I will have to get the information from the regional directorate to say what exactly happened, who was informed of what, what concerns were obtained and things like that,” he said.

source: The Villager

Kelvin Chiringa

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