PETALING JAYA: Babies are now available for sale through Facebook.
Checks by the Sun showed more than 600,000 hits through Google which displayed both open and closed Facebook pages with details such as infants’ age, gender, and health.
Potential adopters are provided with details of the mother’s pregnancy stage, and, based on a case-by-case basis, her monetary needs until post-delivery, which is dubbed “saguhati” (consolation).
Other terms used include bio mum/ma (biological mother), Fa (family), and AA (anak angkat [adopted child]).
One of the page administrators said the platform was created as “an alternative for bio mums and adopted parents”.
Another page, in its information box, says it is meant for individuals who are unable to take care of their babies or are afraid of being stigmatized due to out-of-wedlock pregnancy.
They are instead advised to surrender the baby to them with “no questions asked”.
A member also placed a picture of a baby, saying they were grateful for having adopted the child from a page.
Should potential adopters be interested in adopting and want more information on a child, they can send a private message within the group.
Yayasan Chow Kit founder Dr. Hartini Zainuddin, when contacted, said the situation was serious because it was easy to access the baby-for-sale groups through the Internet.
“The (modus operandi) can involve an intermediary, or through biological mothers with immediate families. This depends on the information available on the FB pages,” she said.
“However, there are adoption groups that advise on the adoption process using proper channels. The FB pages that actually advertise the babies by uploading their pictures are the ones the police, Malaysian Communications, and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) and Welfare Department should monitor.”
On the demand from potential adopters, Hartini said Chinese baby boys fetched the highest price set at US$10,000 (RM40,000) per kg which is paid in that currency.
Malay babies range in price from RM10,000 to RM25,000 per child with Indian infants priced the lowest.
Transactions are cash-based and if the baby is fair-skinned, then the price would be higher.
“Babies sold through illegal adoption is not a trafficking offense. It is not a crime to buy babies but it is a crime to sell them.
“The Child Act and Penal Code are not severe enough. Those who sell the babies are taken to court while the ones buying (the) babies are not prosecuted,” Hartini said.
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