Outrage arises as UCH Ibadan Refuses Sick Newborn Due to Mother’s Niqab Non-Removal


The University College Hospital UCH, Ibadan, has reportedly declined medical attention to a sick newborn, born on January 31, 2024, allegedly due to the mother’s steadfast refusal to remove her veil.

Sobur Opeyemi Rafiu, the distressed father, took to Facebook to articulate the harrowing experience, recounting that, after settling some expenses at the laboratory, the hospital staff adamantly insisted that the mother discard her hijab and veil before granting access to the emergency children’s ward.


The most distressing facet of this ordeal became apparent only after the initial payments were made at the universal laboratory, amounting to ₦15,800. Subsequently, the father was informed that his wife would be denied entry to the ward unless she complied with the hospital’s dress code. In a heart-wrenching revelation, he disclosed, “It was after I made the payment at the laboratory and I was trying to go and get other prescriptions in the treatment sheet I received a call from my wife that she was asked to remove both her hijab and veil before they can attend to my 4 days old baby 😭😭😭.”

The accompanying video captures the father’s poignant inquiry into the rationale behind rejecting the baby due to the mother’s wearing of a veil. A presumed senior nurse, featured in the video, asserted that such a dress code was enforced for security and medical reasons, assuring that it did not contravene any religious or belief systems.

Hassan Adekola Busari, a commenter on the post, supported this explanation, stating, “However, in this particular ward, it’s a tradition that whoever wants to stay with the baby should not put on a loosen garment that can be easily attracted to microorganisms or dirt.”

Despite these justifications, numerous individuals condemned the hospital for perceived unprofessionalism and insensitivity, asserting that, regardless of the rules, the paramount concern should have been the safety and well-being of the newborn. The incident prompted a broader discussion on the challenges faced by women wearing veils and niqabs, with critics arguing that it represents a broader pattern of discrimination.

Source: Intel Region

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