Durban mother faces attempted murder charge for abandoning 'miracle' baby

2019-02-20 17:07

The woman who allegedly abandoned her newborn baby in a storm drain in Durban last week has been charged with attempted murder, the Ntuzuma Magistrate's Court heard on Wednesday.

The 32-year-old mother who cannot be named to protect the child was arrested on Monday after going to hospital for a gynaecological ailment, prosecutor Jenisha Sewbaran said.

The woman did not appear on Wednesday, instead a hospital note was served to the court citing health reasons for her absence.

She is expected to attend court on February 27.

The baby girl, whose survival has been called a "miracle", was rescued from the storm drain pipe after emergency services conducted a mammoth three-hour operation.

This was after the child's cries were heard around 07:30 last Monday on the corner of Barracuda Road and Herring Way in Newlands East.

Soon after her rescue, the baby was taken to Chief Albert Luthuli Hospital where she was treated and was found to be in good health. 

"She has been awake, responsive and crying. Her glucose and sugar levels are good. She is stable enough for [a] transfer to base hospital so the social aspect can be sorted," Dr Timothy Hardcastle previously told journalists who were at the hospital shortly after the child's rescue.

Upon her arrival at the hospital, it was said that the biggest challenge was only her low temperature.

She was unofficially named Sibanisethu, or "Our Light", by residents of the neighbourhood where she was found, before being taken into special care, the provincial department of health said.

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