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By Gareth Cotterell

Digital Editor

Woman says she was given wrong baby at Durban hospital after newborn died

Mother claims dead baby was not hers despite DNA tests confirming it was.

A 38-year-old woman who was told that her newborn baby died in March this year at King Edward Hospital in Durban, is claiming that she was given the wrong child.

Khumbuzile Bhede is adamant that her child did not die, despite DNA tests confirming that the baby was hers.

Mother says dead baby not hers

She says the last time she saw her newborn it was alive. Hours later, however, nurses told her baby girl had passed away.

According to a SABC report, Bhede said she heard her daughter’s cries just before the nurses showed her the baby. She was then taken away to be cleaned, and never saw her child for hours afterwards.

“For the whole night my baby was not with me. At 12 in the afternoon the following day, nurses came to the ward [to pull me aside and tell me] that they did everything they could but the baby died,” she said.

“I wasn’t even told that there was something wrong with my baby because when I gave birth everything was fine.”

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DNA tests

Three DNA tests have been done with all confirming that the dead baby is Bhede’s. She refuses to accept these test results though.

Bhede says the baby she was shown at the mortuary looked older than a newborn. She also wants to know why she was unable to see her newborn for hours after the birth and claims she was not allowed to see her baby before it was taken to the mortuary.

“These things show that there was something suspicious that was done in hospital because everyone has a right to view the body before it’s taken away so you’ll get closure,” she said.

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KwaZulu-Natal police spokesperson Robert Netshiunda confirmed that the DNA tests were positive for Bhede’s child. He added that police are still awaiting autopsy results to confirm the cause of the death.

“The results of the privately conducted DNA test prove that the baby was hers. Further DNA tests through investigations also declared that it was her child that died. Investigations into what might have led to the death of the baby are ongoing,” he said.

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