Saturday, October 25, 2008

Another Case of a Mother taking "Ownership" of a child that took a Man & a Woman to make ~ Is the child a Chattel?

From the Times of South Africa , Johannesburg

Jail for defiant mom on the run Kim Hawkey Published:Oct 26, 2008

She refused to accept maintenance, insisting he was not the father. A test proved he was
Defiant teen mom vanishes with babyJudge says she will be jailed if she continues to refuse ex-boyfriend access to little girl

A teenage mother is facing jail for refusing to allow her former boyfriend to see their little girl.


The mother fell foul of the law after her ex-lover — neither of whom can be named, to protect the baby’s identity — went to court to win access to his daughter.


This month, Johannesburg High Court Judge Moroa Tsoka ordered that the mother would spend a month in jail if she continued to prevent the father from visiting his baby.


But the teenager — who initially refused maintenance payments and the car seat and clothes he bought for their child — has vanished with the girl.


The father has hired a private detective to find them.


According to court papers, the saga began last year while the mother, now aged 19, was pregnant.


The father, a 30-year-old from Boksburg, east of Johannesburg, asked her to marry him and bought a house for them .


When she unexpectedly broke up with him, he thought she was just being “emotional”.


But then she told him he was not the baby’s father and refused to allow him to accompany her on gynaecologist’s visits, he said in the papers.

The man said she cut off all contact and changed her cellphone number .


Last August, he was “extremely upset” to learn that his daughter had been born in July and no one had told him.


He immediately arranged to see the baby, which he remained convinced was his, despite the mother’s denials.


During his first visit, he offered his ex-lover money to take care of the baby. She refused to accept it, insisting he was not the father. But she refused his request for a paternity test.


The man told the court that he tried “on numerous occasions” to see his daughter, but was turned away at the door by his ex , who said he “had no rights” because they had never been married.


Determined to find out if he was the father , he hauled the mother to court in September last year to force her to take the child for a paternity test.


But even after the baby was proved to be his, her mother only allowed him “ad hoc” contact, which soon ended, forcing him back to court earlier this year.


“I dearly love (the baby) and needed to make contact with (her) on a regular basis and as often as possible,” he said in court papers.


The court agreed, ordering that he be allowed to visit his baby on Tuesday evenings, alternate Saturdays and some holidays.


Despite the court order, his ex-girlfriend still refused to let him see his daughter.


The teenager did not contest the court case and the Sunday Times could not contact her for comment.


But in an interview with the newspaper this week, the baby’s father provided some explanation for her actions.


“When she was pregnant, I asked her if she wanted the child to have a father and she said no,” he said.


“She never had a father. He left when she was born.”


He had mixed feelings about landing his baby’s mother in jail.


“She is still the mother of my child. I don’t want anything bad to happen to her, but if it’s the only way that I can see my daughter, then so be it,” he said.


Asif Suleman, of the fathers’ rights group Fathers 4 Justice, said although threatening mothers with prison sentences was “a last resort”, it was sometimes necessary as they were “getting away with” denying unmarried fathers access to their children.


“The whole idea is not to imprison our moms, but to send out a firm and strong warning that a court order is meant to be respected,” he said.


Suleman said he was aware of only two previous occasions in South Africa in which judges had handed mothers suspended sentences for refusing fathers access to their children .


But he hoped “it becomes more common and serves as the deterrent it’s intended to be”.


♦— hawkeyk@sundaytimes.co.za


Jail defiant mom on the run
Published:Nov 02, 2008


The sooner we start jailing parents who prevent visitation and wilfully alienate the other parent from their child, the sooner we would be able to prevent parental alienation and put many of the woes of society behind us, “Jail for defiant mom on the run” (October 26).


If you are not living this, imagine having your child abducted.


It’s a terrible, bone-chilling feeling which I, unfortunately, have lived with for 28 months.


It doesn’t matter if your child is abducted from a beach in Aruba, a hotel room in Portugal or by your ex-mate.


I pray that this mother will be found and jailed.


Our children really deserve to have both fit parents as active participants in their lives.

— Donald Tenn, Fathers-4- Justice

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