‘Miracle babies’ challenged
Posted: 02 Nov 2006 @ 00:00
THE CHARITY Commission has begun investigating a UK church to see whether it
has been involved in baby-trafficking.
The Gilbert Deya ministry in Peckham, south London, came to the
Commissioners’ attention last week after a BBC radio programme said that the
church claimed to be able to give infertile women "miracle babies".
John Waite, the presenter of Radio 4’s Miracle Babies, transmitted
last Friday, said the church’s leader, the Kenyan-born Gilbert Deya, believed
that the root of all ills, physical and spiritual, lay in demons. After
conducting exorcisms, Mr Deya had told the women that they could expect a baby
within a year, the programme reported.
Despite strong medical evidence that they remained infertile, some of the
women had travelled to a clinic in Nairobi where they duly received the
promised "miracle babies".
The explanation that the women were illegally adopting infant Kenyan
children was rejected by Mr Denya, who is also known as the head of the United
Evangelical Churches of Kenya and an Archbishop.
He told Mr Waite that he could not explain the babies "because they are of
God, and things of God cannot be explained by human beings. We witness that
[the women] are pregnant. They went to Kenya and they came back with babies."
Mr Deya denied that there was money in these "miracle" births. "I am running
a charity here in this country; we are not making money from these miracles at
all," he said. The congregation is raising funds to build a new church to hold
A spokeswoman for the Charity Commissioners said that it had opened an
evaluation of the charity. This was an initial-assessment stage, in which it
would liaise with police and immigration authorities to see if an offence —
baby trafficking — had been involved.
It would also see whether the trustees of the charity had been involved in
anything illegal, she said. The evaluation was expected to take up to two
Trafficking in children is a global problem affecting up to 1.2 million
children and babies a year, according to UNICEF.