|Rotimi with her baby boy|
Last week Wednesday, news went viral on social networks that 22-year-old, Oyinlola Rotimi a 400-level student of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, gave birth to a baby inside one of the toilets in her hostel in attempt to kill her new born.
Rotimi who is studying Agricultural Extension and Rural Sociology was found in one of the toilets in Moremi Hall, her hall of residence by two cleaners who hurriedly rushed her and the new born to the institution’s Health Center.
Rotimi, who was discharged from the hospital on Friday, narrated what actually happened saying she was not in any way trying to kill her baby, the cleaners that helped her out also defended her... Read what she told PUNCH below...
“Why would I flush or kill my baby after going through the pains of carrying him for about good nine months? I am not heartless and I thank God for my life and the safe delivery. I know God has the best plan for me and my baby.
I seriously appreciate the cleaners for their assistance because I got here (health centre) before I understood everything that happened to me. I am happy that I am alive and my baby is alive too. I’m also using this opportunity to thank the VC, the doctors and nurses, my lecturers and everybody because they all stood by me. They all became my father, my mother and everything to me.
“Right now, I can call myself a celebrity and definitely I’m going to be greater than a celebrity. My baby too is going to be great. Look at the circumstance that surrounds his birth, just some days old, he is already all over in the news around the world and everybody is happy to see him or hear about his story. He will surely go beyond where I am now. He has turned me into a kind of celebrity. ”
“I was purging all through the night and I had no idea of what labour pain was all about. Actually, I was feeling pressed, I can’t call it a labour pain because I was visiting the toilet all through the night till that morning. I just went to the toilet to go and purge when I noticed something just came out of me which I found out was the baby. The baby entered the closet. I was just there shouting, bleeding and people who saw the blood came out to help me alongside the baby.
“I was really scared! I was not expecting a baby. I went to the toilet but seeing a baby was terrifying because I was not expecting him or her to come out yet. It is absolutely not true that I took to my heels when people came to help me. It happened in Moremi Hall toilet and the toilet is a public one where everybody takes their bath, fetch water and clean up. So, some people were around fetching water, having their bath as usual, while I was in the toilet planning to defecate. My friend called the cleaner for help because she was an elderly woman. I was very scared and people around too couldn't help because we are all young female students. The cleaner later helped to carry the baby out and brought it to the Health Center along with me.”
Her plan for the baby
“I will continue to keep him more handsome, healthier and nurture him to attain greater height in life. But what he will become later in life is not for me to decide but he will definitely become what God wants him to become. I will just try to train him in God’s way and I am sure His (God) plan for his life will be realized.”
The bean cake she ate deceived her – CSO
According to the institution’s Chief Security Officer, Mr. Paul Ogidi, Rotimi thought she had stomach upset instead of labor pains because of the bean cake she took before going to bed.
“She got to campus late at night on Tuesday and it was learnt that she could not immediately get herself something to eat but later resolved to buy beans cake within the campus. After eating the snack, she complained severely of running stomach, urinated and defecated at regular intervals.
“She felt her stomach disorder was caused by the bean cake that she took the previous night – not knowing it was labour pains.”
Varsity law does not forbid pregnancy - OAU
Authorities of OAU have blamed the improper use of the social media for the allegation that Oyinlola attempted to flush her baby away.
The Head of Public Relations, Mr. Biodun Olarenwaju, who spoke on behalf of the management, described the incident as a “social media rumour.”
He said, “Social media is designed primarily to disseminate information. But in the Nigerian context, many people disseminate rumors The only information that should be seen there should be those persons who have the authority to speak concerning that particular incident.
“The only truth in the social media episode is that a bouncing baby boy was delivered in the toilet of the female hostel in our university. Other tales on the social media were totally incorrect. Students should not encourage rumor mongering because of the image of the person involved. They have to be careful not to make rumor the news.”
He explained that it was legal for the student to have delivered the baby in the school, stating that universities are institutions for adults.
“It is not a crime for a student to be pregnant. There is no law or decree that states that a student should be punished, an adult for that matter, for getting pregnant. And there is no law in this university that states that an undergraduate cannot become pregnant,” he added.
We forced the door open to rescue Oyinlola, baby – Cleaners
Also, the two cleaners, Mrs. Shipebi Grace and Mrs. Cecilia Ologbenla, in a chat with our correspondents, said there was no evidence to prove that Oyinlola wanted to kill her baby.
The cleaners noted that they had to force the door open when they were called to ensure the safety of Oyinlola and her baby who was crying. According to them, the baby was in the water closet when they entered the toilet.
“She would not have wanted to attempt to kill the baby the way we saw her. She only panicked when we forced the door in. We had to force the door in because of the cry of the baby. In fact, it was one of them that came to call us, but you know some students are impatient. They didn’t confirm what happened before they started spreading rumor.