The 17 month old had presented with symptoms of the novel coronavirus.
Rabat – The Wilaya (Prefecture) of Morocco’s northeastern city of Oujda has denied allegations of mishandling a deceased toddler. A woman posted an accusatory video about her daughter who died on March 27 with symptoms that may have been caused by COVID-19.
The woman launched a live video on Facebook on Monday, March 30, claiming that authorities took her 17 month old toddler away from her after the child died, and that she does not know whether the authorities buried her daughter or took the body elsewhere.
“I did not run away from my rights, and this is what actually happens when you ask for your right in this country,” the woman stressed in her video.
The Prefecture of Oujda recounted the event from its beginning on Thursday, March 26, when the mother brought her young daughter to the Mohammed VI University Hospital of Oujda (Oujda CHU) for a medical check-up because the toddler was sick, according to Maghreb Arab Press (MAP).
Medical staff at Oujda CHU examined the child and detected symptoms of COVID-19, then informed the mother and conducted a laboratory analysis.
The 17 month old died the following day, March 27, before the laboratory issued its report. Medical authorities informed the mother of the toddler’s death and of the burial procedure, in accordance with national and international standards for the burial of COVID-19 victims, the source added.
The prefecture affirmed that the appropriate officials transferred the woman to her house, and then gave her instructions for sanitary containment to avoid infecting her family and neighbors, the same source reported.
COVID-19 Testing Procedures
A medical team was then sent to the woman’s house to conduct COVID-19 tests, accompanied by local authorities.
The woman refused to adhere to the testing procedures, not allowing the medical team to test her family, according to the prefecture.
March 28, following the day of the medical test refusal, the woman violated the emergency state law forbidding individuals from leaving their houses without an exceptional movement permit. The woman traveled to the public prosecutor’s office in the city of Berkane, 60 kilometers from Oujda.
Local authorities escorted her to another hospital to undergo testing for COVID-19. Meanwhile, another medical team traveled to her house in order to test her family.
“They took me to the laboratory, after I requested a COVID-19 check, then I got surprised by a phone call informing me that local authorities broke into my house with force, terrorized my children and took them,” the woman continued, recording the video from a vehicle that she claimed to be an ambulance.
The Prefecture of Oujda stressed its will to clarify all of the case’s circumstances to enlighten public opinion and to assuage suspicions that the woman’s video may have raised, according to a press release from the prefecture.
“The Wilaya affirms its attachment to the application of the law, on any person suspected of diffusing false allegations, malicious accusations and false statements against individuals or institutions,” the press release concluded.