x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Baby thrown down garbage chute showing signs of epilepsy

Boy was thrown down ninth floor rubbish chute in Sharjah hours after being born.

SHARJAH // A baby who was thrown down a rubbish chute from the ninth floor hours after being born is recovering but shows signs of epilepsy, such as seizures.

The boy suffered a fractured skull and was treated at Al Qassimi Hospital for more than a month after being found in April.

He was then transferred to a home for abused and abandoned children run by Sharjah Social Services.

"We asked them to keep him at the hospital and they said 'no, it's better that you take care of him'," said Afaf Al Marri, chairwoman of social services, adding the baby would be readmitted if there were further complications.

"Because he is very young he quickly becomes better, but still he is not stable."

During the seizures "he becomes blue sometimes", Ms Al Marri said.

A watchman in the Al Taawun apartment building found the boy at the bottom of the chute, wrapped in newspapers and in a plastic bag.

Police arrested the infant's mother, a maid from the Philippines, soon after the boy was found. She has been referred to Public Prosecution.

Police said she was working illegally for a family who also face charges for employing her.

Brig Abdullah Al Dukhan, deputy director of Sharjah Police, described the boy's survival as a miracle.

But Dr Arif Al Nooryani, chief executive of Al Qassimi Hospital, said the skull fracture could have caused long-term brain damage.

The boy is one of several babies across the country who have been found abandoned in rubbish.

Last month, a baby girl was found dead by a worker on the premises of Bee'ah, the Sharjah waste-management company.

In November, a maid in Ras Al Khaimah was charged with strangling her newborn, conceived out of wedlock, and dropping the dead baby down a rubbish chute.

And in October 2009, the parents of a newborn baby found dead at the bottom of another rubbish chute in Sharjah were arrested. It was not known whether baby was alive before the fall.

vnereim@thenational.ae