The Baby Without A Country – Nigerian migrant gives birth in the Mediteranean Sea The Baby Without A Country – Nigerian migrant gives birth in the Mediteranean Sea
Newman Otas was born somewhere between hell and high water just after 7 am on September 12, on board MV Aquarius, a search and rescue... The Baby Without A Country – Nigerian migrant gives birth in the Mediteranean Sea

Newman Otas was born somewhere between hell and high water just after 7 am on September 12, on board MV Aquarius, a search and rescue vessel run in partnership between MSF and SOS Mediterranee.


He was born at 7:00 am ship’s time in international waters to Nigerian parents, who have named him Newman Otas. His parents, Otas and Faith, and older brothers Victory, seven, and Rollres, five, were rescued from an overcrowded rubber boat 24 hours earlier.

Currently 392 people are on board after two rubber boats were rescued and one transfer accepted: 155 people on board are under 18, 141 of them  are traveling alone – without a parent or guardian accompanying them. There are 11 children under five and now four babies under a year.

On Monday September 12, at 0700 ships time, a healthy baby boy was born on board MV Aquarius, a search and rescue vessel run in partnership between MSF and SOS MEDITERRANEE. He was born in international waters to Nigerian parents who named him Newman Otas. Mother Faith recounts ìI was very stressed on the rubber boat, sitting on the floor of the boat with the other women and children. Panicking that I would go into labor. I could feel my baby moving, he would move down and then move back up again. I had been having contractions for three days.î MSF Midwife Jonquil Nicholl delivered the baby ìA very normal birth in dangerously abnormal conditions. I am filled with horror at the thought of what would have happened if this baby had arrived 24 hours earlier; in that unseaworthy rubber boat, with fuel on the bottom where the women sit, crammed in with no space to move, at the mercy of the sea. And 48 hours previously they were waiting on a beach in Libya not knowing what was ahead of them. How can this still this still happen in 2016? That families, vulnerable people, pregnant women, tiny babies and unborn babies are forced to risk their lives in the Mediterranean Sea when they should be receiving assistance and protection.î

“I was very stressed on the rubber boat, sitting on the floor of the boat with the other women and children” Faith recounts. “Panicking that I would go into labour. I could feel my baby moving, he would move down and then move back up again. I had been having contractions for three days.”
On Monday September 12, at 0700 ships time, a healthy baby boy was born on board MV Aquarius. He was born in international waters to Nigerian parents who named him Newman Otas. Mother Faith recounts ìI was very stressed on the rubber boat, sitting on the floor of the boat with the other women and children. Panicking that I would go into labor. I could feel my baby moving, he would move down and then move back up again. I had been having contractions for three days.î MSF Midwife Jonquil Nicholl delivered the baby ìA very normal birth in dangerously abnormal conditions. I am filled with horror at the thought of what would have happened if this baby had arrived 24 hours earlier; in that unseaworthy rubber boat, with fuel on the bottom where the women sit, crammed in with no space to move, at the mercy of the sea. And 48 hours previously they were waiting on a beach in Libya not knowing what was ahead of them. How can this still this still happen in 2016? That families, vulnerable people, pregnant women, tiny babies and unborn babies are forced to risk their lives in the Mediterranean Sea when they should be receiving assistance and protection.î
MSF Midwife Jonquil Nicholl, who delivered the baby said:  “A very normal birth in dangerously abnormal conditions. I am filled with horror at the thought of what would have happened if this baby had arrived 24 hours earlier; in that unseaworthy rubber boat, with fuel on the bottom where the women sit, crammed in with no space to move, at the mercy of the sea,”
Newman Otas might also have a right to claim French citizenship, since the vessel he was born on had a French flag.


Henry Okafor

  • Latisha Moorer

    September 12, 2016 #1 Author

    This is so interesting! He’s a miracle baby!

    Reply

  • Jazzma Williams

    September 12, 2016 #2 Author

    Thank God for keeping his hands on Both Mom & Baby!! Beautiful baby boy Congratulations 😘😘

    Reply

  • Sierra

    September 13, 2016 #3 Author

    Oh wow . Is that even possible?

    Reply

  • Passion

    September 13, 2016 #4 Author

    He is so beautiful. What a happy family 😍😍😚

    Reply

  • carolynn malunga

    September 13, 2016 #5 Author

    He is a miracle baby .May God shower him with more blessings

    Reply

  • Lena hicks

    September 13, 2016 #6 Author

    He is such a blessing

    Reply

  • Emonee howard

    September 13, 2016 #7 Author

    Thank you God for protecting them . Definitely a miracle baby

    Reply

  • Lequoyah Brownlee

    September 13, 2016 #8 Author

    God bless the mother that gave birth to her miracle baby . she’s so strong and her baby is so beautiful. 😍😍

    Reply

  • Dezaria Theus

    September 14, 2016 #9 Author

    God bless them both , they both are strong and the baby is gorgeous

    Reply

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