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Monday, 3 November 2014

Norway Forcefully Adopts Nigerian Woman's Baby Because Mother And Child Lacks Emotional And Eye Contact

Agho with the baby

The House of Representatives has re-opened investigations into the alleged forceful adoption of a one-year-old baby belonging to a Nigerian by the Norwegian government.

The decision was sequel to a petition filed by Edo State born-Nigerian mother of the child, based in Norway, Ms. Queen Agho, to the House over the matter.
PUNCH Metro learnt that Queen conceived the baby in Nigeria before travelling to Norway.

It was learnt that when she was delivered of the baby boy in Leirfjord, Norway on April 12 2013, the baby was taken from her by the Child Welfare Authorities, barely two weeks after the delivery on the excuse that Agho was mentally unstable and incapable of taking care of him.

The baby was said to have been given to a Norwegian lady for adoption on the excuse that mother (Agho) and child did not have an emotional connection and lacked eye contact.

The action of the Norwegian government was said to have left her psychologically and emotionally depressed.

The Minority Whip in the House, Mr. Samson Osagie, had brought the issue before the House following a petition by Agho.

He asked for the intervention of the House, stressing that the case should be “treated with the utmost attention it deserves as in my constituent, a mother is being deprived of the privilege of motherhood. 

The mother, Agho, wants her child back immediately.”

When contacted, the Chairperson, House of Representatives Committee on Diaspora, Ms. Abike Dabiri, confirmed that efforts were on to address the issue.

She said, “We are aware of the case and we have gone far with it. In fact, we have met with the Norwegian Ambassador to Nigeria and we would have met with the Child Support people from Norway two weeks ago.

“The meeting had to be rescheduled because of the strike by Lufthansa employees in Germany. Their flight was cancelled. We are looking towards another date for the meeting. But I can tell you we are on it.”

The spokesperson for the family, Mr. Kelvin Izekor, said several efforts by Agho to contest the forceful adoption through an Appeal Court had been frustrated by the Norwegian authorities.

According to him, the Nigerian Embassy in Stockholm, Sweden which is overseeing affairs in Norway and the National Assembly has waded into the issue without any positive result.

He said the Norwegian Child Welfare Authorities claimed that Agho was forcefully taken to a psychiatric home by the police and child welfare for the purpose of generating official evidence to substantiate their claims.

But Izekor faulted the claim saying the doctor had confirmed her to be mentally fit and healthy to care for her baby.

He also stated that officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Abuja had not been forthcoming as efforts to compel the Norwegian government to stop the adoption had not been successful.
Agho, according to her uncle, took her case to the Nigeria Embassy in Sweden and the embassy stepped in as it officially laid a complaint.

The embassy officially requested for the intervention of the Swedish Government through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Rotal Kingdom of Norway.

The embassy, in its official complaint (Note verbale) dated September 18, 2013, condemned the act, describing it as inhumane infringement of basic fundamental human rights and a child’s right to a family.

The embassy also decried the increasing cases of arbitrary seizure of Nigerian children over flimsy reasons.

The letter reads in part, “The embassy wishes to register its utmost displeasure with the manner in which, a nursing mother, Ms. Agho, was treated. For such treatment to be meted out to a defenceless woman who had just given birth to her first child is most inhumane and certainly is in breach of all human rights practices.

“The allegation that there was no connection between mother and child and lack of eye contact within the first two weeks of the baby’s life seems to be in total contradiction of the reality of the mother’s position.

“The embassy therefore wishes to once more seize this opportunity to draw the attention of the esteemed Royal Ministry to the increasing cases of arbitrary seizure of Nigerian children on very flimsy and unacceptable reasons.

“The decision to seize a suckling baby of two weeks and four days from its mother and deprive the baby of the essential nutrients of breast milk and motherly love from his biological mother is indeed inhuman and an infringement of the mother’s most basic fundamental human rights and child’s right to a family life.”

When contacted on the telephone, Queen who is in Norway told PUNCH Metro that the Norwegian Child Welfare Authorities, had already taken away the baby “for adoption for a period of 18 years.”

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