Home News Happy reunion for Baby Japhta

Happy reunion for Baby Japhta


The newborn baby who was snatched from Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital in Kimberley earlier this week has been reunited with his mother.

Natasha Japhta was reunited with her kidnapped baby. Picture Soraya Crowie

THERE was much rejoicing after the newborn baby who was snatched from Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital in Kimberley was reunited with his mother on Friday.

The police arrested a 21-year-old woman in connection with the kidnapping in Greenpoint on Friday.

They found the woman with the baby girl, as well as the pink baby grow that she was last seen in when she was stolen, at her home.

The baby was found unharmed and in good health.

Natasha Japhta was overjoyed and relieved to see her baby.

“I was worried that I would never see her again but by God’s grace she was found. I think I will change her name to Miracle Blessing. I can’t afford to let her out of my sight,” said the emotional mother.

She said that the nurses had given her medication as she was unable to sleep after her baby was stolen on September 5.

She added that her baby was well cared for by the kidnapper.

“She was dressed in a new set of clothes when the police found her on Friday morning. Someone at the hospital showed me a picture on Facebook that the police had found her.”

Japhta said that the suspect had purchased milk formula as the baby refused to breastfeed.

“My baby knew by instinct that it was not her mother.

“While I am angry at the trauma that she put me through, I forgive her because she must have gone through a terrible time when she had a miscarriage.”

She added that she felt safer since security had been beefed up at the hospital.

Natasha Japhta and her baby. Picture: Soraya Crowie

Her uncle, Herbert Japhta, indicated that he would proceed with the negligence case against the MEC for Health.

“Defensor Security signed a multimillion-rand contract with the Department of Health, yet security guards were not at their posts as they were not paid. Patients paid the price – lives are at stake while people are playing politics. As the custodian of health in the Province, we never saw the MEC once throughout our entire ordeal. What would have happened if it was his grandchild that was kidnapped?”

He pointed out that there were many other “voiceless” patients who did not have the means to speak out.

“This was Baby Japhta, what about the other patients whose cries have fallen on deaf ears?”

Kimberley SAPS Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences (FCS) unit members – Detective Constable Shaun Boer, Detective Sergeant Nomonde Mothelesi, Kimberley FCS commander Detective Lieutenant-Colonel Harriet McKenzie and Detective Sergeant Juanita Lakey – with Natasha Japhta and Baby Japhta. Picture: SAPS
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