There has been a lot of baby dumping cases as reported in the media. It then becomes logical to ask why women dump babies, who, naturally are meant to bond with, nurture and protect.
The women, who are in different age groups, dump babies mainly in pit latrines after concealing both the pregnancy and birth.
Some abandon babies at hospitals, safe houses or leave them in rubbish sites and left to die of starvation of suffocation, according to internet research.
Baby dumping, according to a child non-governmental organisation (NGO) in South Africa is a result of unwanted pregnancy through incest, rape, psychological problems and young women fearing rejection by their parents and/or the community if they are found to have had a baby born outside of wedlock.
Others are rejection by a partner, prostitution, fear of shame, lack of knowledge on foster care or adoption, HIV and Aids where some women who are HIV positive think that their baby will also be infected and will die soon, fear of leaving school and poverty.
Such cases are contrary to section 232 of the Penal Code which attracts a maximum penalty of two years Imprisonment with Hard Labour (IHL).
On January 1 2013 a teenager at Kafukule in Mzimba secretly delivered and went to a nearby stream where she dumped her baby.
According to police, the baby was discovered floating by one of the villagers as she went to her garden which is closer to the stream.
Deputy national police publicist Kelvin Maigwa said this week that baby dumping was a big challenge because many die secretly as only a few are dealt with by the to deter other women from the practice.
He says while the act is criminal, many women continue murdering the newly- born babies without hesitation, some of which are protected by their families after the act.
“These cases are becoming quite rampant. Unfortunately we do not have statistics. We received more cases of baby dumping last year than in the past.
“We as are appealing to women not to dump babies as a way of resolving conflicts or solving whatever problems. It is inhuman to take away life, which is a gift from God,” Maigwa said.
Specialist in clinical services Sandress Gondwe attributes baby dumping to unpreparedness in having a baby, desperation and panic.
“They are also common due to the migration of men to South Africa who go looking for greener pastures where they stay for a long time before coming back home,” he said.