Dubai: A Dubai-based couple, who had abandoned their physically disadvantaged newborn child at a Dubai hospital, claiming he needed treatment, have now been asked by Dubai Police to take the boy home after signing an undertaking that they will take good care of him.
According to Dubai Police, a hospital in Bur Dubai filed a complaint against the couple after they refused to take their child home following a six-month hospital stay.
According to Major Dr Ali Al Matroushi, Director of Woman and Child Protection Section at the Human Rights Department in Dubai Police, the parents alleged that their child was undergoing treatment for a congenital disability. “The parents were first-degree relatives and their firstborn was a child of determination. Despite doctors’ warning them against having more children, the woman gave birth to their second child, who also presented with the same disability,” said Maj Al Matroushi.
He said the parents left their newborn infant at the hospital on the ground that he was receiving treatment. They visited him often during his stay at the hospital for over six months but when they were asked to take him home, they refused. The child’s condition was stable and he did not require hospital stay. But the parents refused to take him home.
Hospital offers help
According to Major Al Matroushi, the hospital offered to provide them with medical home care equipment. “The parents did not respond and the hospital lodged a complaint against them at the police station,” said Maj Al Matroushi.
What the law says
Federal Law No. 3 of 2016, concerning child rights, also know as Wadeema’s Law, protects children against all forms of negligence, exploitation, physical and psychological abuses.
Those who put children in danger, abandon them, neglect them, leave them without supervision, do not enrol them in school or register them upon their birth will be subject to a prison sentence or a fine or both. The law applies to all children up to the age of 18.
Finally, Dubai Police intervened and handed over the child to his parents after they signed an undertaking promising to look after their child.
Moreover, the Community Development Authority is following up the case to ensure the child’s safety and that he is receiving appropriate care.
According to Maj Al Matroushi, his department dealt with a number of cases where parents of newborns with determination left their children at hospitals for months on lame excuses. “It is the parents’ responsibility to provide for their children’s needs and protect their rights. If parents neglect their children, they are accountable and can be punished under the law,” Maj Al Matroushi added.
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