How US-based Couple Are Using Police, Others To Forcibly Take Twins From Nigerian Surrogate Mother Despite Defaulting On Agreement—Lawyer


AUnited States-based couple, Gamaliel Onyeka Onyemaobi and his wife, Shullam Francisca C. A. Onyemaobi, have been alleged to be using the Nigeria Police Force, to seize male twin children from a surrogate mother, Gift Chinyere Solomon in Nigeria.

Solomon’s counsel, who is a popular human rights lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, in a statement on Monday, obtained by SaharaReporters, narrated that the American couple were using the police to harass the woman so they can take custody of the children after having abandoned them without care.

Effiong warned that the Nigeria Police Force and the Interpol must not allow themselves to be used as “agents of injustice, oppression, impunity and crass lawlessness.”
He added that the matter was already going to the law court.

He said, “I am compelled by extreme urgency, to alert the Nigerian Government, the Inspector General of Police, the Nigerian Immigration Service, the American Embassy in Nigeria, the media, international community and the general public about the ongoing sinister efforts by a Nigerian American couple, Mr. Gamaliel Onyeka Onyemaobi and his wife Mrs. Shullam Francisca C. A. Onyemaobi, to use the instrumentality of the National Central Bureau (NCB) of the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) at the Police Force Headquarters in Abuja to forcefully and illegally seize a set of twins (males) from their genetic, biological and surrogate mother, Ms. Gift Chinyere Solomon.

“Our client, Ms. Gift Chinyere Solomon, was approached by her aunt, Mrs. Shullam Francisca C. A. Onyemaobi, and her husband, Mr. Gamaliel Onyeka Onyemaobi, to be a surrogate mother for them since they were unable to bear children on their own as a couple. After much pressure, our client agreed to the surrogacy process based on three immutable conditions, namely:

“1. That the couple who are dual citizens of Nigeria and the United States of America (USA), would secure an American Visa for her and ensure that she travels to the USA where they would sponsor her in a Nursing programme in a school in the USA; 2. That they will pay for her parents’ urgently needed surgeries; and 3. That they will fully cater for her personal, antenatal and postnatal needs and other essential and ancillary needs.
“Following the acceptance of the above conditions by Mr. and Mrs. Onyemaobi, our client was admitted at a fertility clinic in Lagos State in February 2021 where she successfully underwent the process of traditional surrogacy resulting in her pregnancy and eventual delivery of a set of male twins named Chukwuemeka and Chinonso.

“However, our client briefed us that soon after she donated her eggs which were extracted from her and artificially inseminated using sperm purportedly from Mr. Onyemaobi, which resulted in her pregnancy, the couple abandoned her to her fate and did not show reasonable concern or care towards her and her unborn babies. It took persistent complaints from our client before the couple reluctantly sent a paltry sum of N600,000 (Six Hundred Thousand Naira only) to her at two instalments of N400,000 and N200,000 respectively.”
Effiong added that the said sum of money was not, and could not have been sufficient to cover the expensive antenatal and postnatal medical and related needs of his client and the set of twins.
The lawyer said all efforts by his client to get the couple to keep to the promises they made to her proved abortive.
He continued, “Apart from processing a passport for our client, the couple also reneged on their promise to take our client to the USA and sponsor her in a Nursing programme.
“As if the betrayal was not enough, the couple also refused to sponsor the urgently needed surgeries of our client’s parents. Our client’s father died on her birthday on the 9th of January, 2022 after battling sickness without getting the needed medical attention due to lack of funds. Our client’s mother is still battling her medical condition with no funds to undergo the needed surgery.

“Our client’s newly married husband who had consented to the surrogacy arrangement while they were dating, out of his kindness and love for her, his wife and the twins, took responsibility for the welfare and medical needs of our client and the two children. He assumed a fatherly role for the babies before their birth, while they were in the incubator for one month, after their birth and up to this moment. The children were born prematurely at 8 months of pregnancy which warranted their incubation.

“Suddenly, Mr. and Mrs. Onyemaobi have returned from the United States, and are now in Nigeria seeking to reap where they did not sow (it takes more than sperm donation to be a parent) by recruiting INTERPOL and the Nigeria Police Force to forcefully and illegally seize our client’s 7-month-old babies from her. The INTERPOL is now desperately hunting our client and her husband and their immediate family members with the sole intention of taking the set of twins from them, with the likelihood of the babies being smuggled out of the country.

“The INTERPOL is going after our client over fabricated and baseless allegations of ‘criminal breach of contract’, ‘criminal breach of trust’, ‘criminal conspiracy’ and other ridiculous allegations levelled against our client by the couple.
“As far as the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria are concerned, the Police in whatever name or form, have no power to investigate or arrest any person over matters bordering on ‘contract’ or which are civil in nature. If the couple are convinced that the so-called ‘surrogacy agreement’, which we are reliably informed they have now fabricated in their sickening desperation to seize our client’s kids, is valid, legal and enforceable in Nigeria, why have they not approached a competent court of law for redress? Why resort to crude intimidation?

“It is also important to alert the public that our client’s brother was kidnapped by yet-to-be-apprehended criminals. But luckily, he escaped in the bush where he was taken to while the kidnappers were arguing over the phone over money with their sponsor(s). This kidnap incident happened soon after Mr. Onyemaobi called and threatened the victim that he and members of his family were already dead.

We challenge Mr. Onyemaobi to deny this. Also, our client’s sick mother narrowly escaped being kidnapped after her residence was invaded by yet-to-be-apprehended gunmen who stormed her apartment in search of her. Both cases took place over the weekend in Aba town in Abia State and have been reported to the Nigeria Police Force. Our client’s immediate family members are now in hiding.

“The same couple who do not know the hospital where the set of twins were born, are now trying to use the Police to forcefully and illegally seize the babies because they believe that Nigeria, unlike the United States of America where they reside as dual citizens, is a lawless country where any nonentity can hire the Police for nefarious activities.
“To be clear, our client has no intention of handing over her lovely children whom she has suffered to raise to this point with her husband to a deadbeat couple who had abandoned her and the babies in their most vulnerable period and had reneged on the agreed conditions for the surrogacy. That will be robbing Peter to pay Paul. That will be immoral, callous, oppressive, unjust and ungodly.

“Mrs. Shullam to the best knowledge of our client, already has five children (though from a different marriage or relationship). It is in the best interest of the twins to live with our client and her caring husband being the only parent they know. Our client and her husband have since undertaken full responsibility for the welfare of the set of twins, Chukwuemeka and Chinonso.

“We, therefore, urge Nigerians to impress upon INTERPOL and the Nigeria Police Force not to allow themselves to be used as agents of injustice, oppression, impunity and crass lawlessness. They should stay out of this matter and advise the couple to approach the court for redress if they have a cause of action.
“We are fully ready to meet them in court for the law to be tested, and for the rights and obligations of the parties to be determined through the judicial process. Our client has not committed any offence known to law by her decision to keep and cater for her biological children.”

Credit: Saharareporters



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