Edo State Government has commenced the enforcement of the closure of unregistered orphanage homes in the state with a warning that any orphanage home operating illegally will be shut down and their license revoked to stop illegal baby market in the state

The enforcement team led by the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Youth and Gender Issues, Peter Osagie disclosed this during an unscheduled visit to Omosefe Orphanage Home, Ugbor road and Famous Faithland Orphanage, Ikpoba Hill, following a tip off that they are operating illegally.

It would be recalled that on March 28, 2012, Edo State Government ordered the temporary closure of two orphanage homes and on April 24th 2020, shut down the orphanage homes over poor facilities.

Reliable sources disclosed that since they were closed down by the government, the orphanages have been operating illegally in an unhealthy environment not suitable for an orphanage and to their amazement at the Omosefe Orphanage Home, the enforcement team which included social welfare workers and the director, child development in the ministry, Kate Bello saw the unhealthy environment which was like a poultry farm and a den for raising criminals.

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The permanent secretary who disclosed that the orphanage homes remain closed said the ministry is getting intelligence report that some orphanage homes are operating illegally for baby market.

He said: “We want to ensure that the rights of the child are protected, because the Child Rights law protects every child from even their irresponsible parents. Any orphanage that wants to operate should go through the proper channel and get registered by the ministry and they should stop operating illegally.”

The owner of Omosefe Orphanage who was not around when the enforcement team visited but was invited for questioning by the law enforcement agency to explain why she was operating when she was not authorized to do so.

Also, at the Famous Faithland Orphanage, where some children were found, it was discovered that the one-bedroom apartment orphanage home has since been closed down with no license to operate a creche either.