Photo0060Every woman, ok, almost every woman desires to have a child, we are simply wired that way. We long to be mothers, to experience the labour of bringing kids into the world, to watch them suckle,Photo0052 smile and grow, to hear them say ‘mummy’, to be able to watch them fall and cry. However, life does not always give us what we desire or deserve, but like they say, when life gives you lemon, you make lemonade out of it. Which is why some women opt for adoption if they cannot conceive.

There are so many couples, young and old, these days that desire to adopt babies, some because they are unable to have theirs others because they want to add to the child{ren} they have already. In the olden days, this practice is unheard of. Family members will be like, ‘no way will you bring a child of questionable blood to come and contaminate our lineage’, ‘how can you think of using money to buy a child whose parents you do not even know?’, ‘what if the child turns out to be an armed robber or comes from water spirits? Or worse’, blah, blah, blah. Even when the couple go ahead to adopt, these relatives and neighbours tend to stigmatise against these children.

However, in recent times, people are becoming more accommodating and understanding and many more couples are taking the bold step of adopting babies. As the demand for these babies increase, the supply is also increasing- legal and illegal.

The baby factories are springing up everywhere and conducting brisk business and smiling to the bank. Some employ the services of young men and women to procreate babies for sale, everybody involved gets their commission when the ‘goods’ are sold to the lucky parents, and everybody is happy.

Some others work through hospitals and maternities. They liase with these health care providers and whenever an ‘unwanted’ baby is born, they come in, buy them off and sell to an already waiting would-be parents. Sometimes, the babies they sell are stolen from the hospitals and sold to unsuspecting couples. Anything for money right?

Still others partner with motherless babies homes and adopt through them without having to go through the government established channels.

All these afore-mentioned means of adopting children require huge amounts of money being paid by the people that want to adopt the babies and they are all illegal.

The Nigerian government has an established process for adoption of babies which couples seeking to adopt babies can follow to get their hearts’ desires. This process ought to take like six to nine months for the baby to get to the homes of the prospective parent(s), which is fine considering that the biological mother carries the baby nine months too. Besides, that gives room for the social workers to scrutinize these people to ensure that the safety of these kids are guaranteed to an extent at least. If only the process is followed diligently…

I was at an orphanage home recently, it was a fulfilling experience but what got me thinking was the number of children habiting there. Even though the care givers obviously try their best to make the kids as comfortable as possible, thanks to kind-hearted Nigerians, yet the environment is not the best to raise children in. I was wondering, how come so many children were over-crowded within that confine when so many women out there are looking for means of adopting babies. Why is it very difficult to adopt these children and give them a better home and a better chance at life? Some of them are already teenagers. What does the future hold for them in that orphanage and for how long?

But the law, bureaucracy and corruption in the system makes it an uphill task to successfully and easily adopt a baby through this established process even though it is almost free.

That is why people would rather pay huge sums of money to get what they want than go through all that red-tapism which sometimes does not guarantee that they will achieve their desired goal.

It is already a big challenge and heart-ache for the couple that cannot have a baby of their own, or that cannot have as many as they want. To compound that issue by making it almost impossible to adopt the many babies yearning for a mother’s touch, thereby denying them a proper home and a better future is not in anyone’s best interest.

The artificial methods are also available, but how many average Nigerian can afford that?