SAYING the care of a real mother is unparalleled, Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) General Manager Ed Monreal is urging the mother of a three-month-old baby boy whom she left to a total stranger at the NAIA Terminal 1 to get the baby back.
Monreal’s appeal came after receiving a report that the poor baby, identified as Ashan, arrived with her mother from Jordan at around 11 Thursday night on board Etihad Airways flight EY 428.
The mother, identified as Vilma Lastima, 36, of Davao City and said to be an overseas Filipino worker (OFW), reportedly spent the night at the NAIA Terminal 1 arrival extension along with the baby, until she met Myrna Bonaobra, 36, of Montalban, Rizal, at past 9 a.m. yesterday.
Lastima, according to details gathered by Public Affairs Office head Consuelo Bungag, befriended Bonaobra who happens to be at the terminal to pick up an arriving friend from Taiwan.
Bonaobra then relented to a request made by Lastima for her to look after the baby for a while, saying she will just accompany a friend somewhere and will be back soon.
To gain Bonaobra’s trust, Lastima left her passport and the baby’s travel documents as well. Bonaobra, on the other hand, gave her cellphone number to Lastima so she can contact her if she is already on her way to get the baby back.
Thus, the boy was left to the care of Bonaobra before 10 a.m. yesterday at the NAIA 1’s extension arrival. Bonaobra waited for Lastima to return and when she was still nowhere in sight at already 2:30 p.m. and did not make any call, Bonaobra sought assistance from the airport police.
Bonaobra expressed willingness to adopt the baby but Airport Police Lt. Nestor Dugan said that they will first have to bring the matter to the attention of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) for proper documentation.
If Lastima totally abandons the baby or tells Bonaobra that she is no longer interested to get him back, police said Bonaobra may then inquire from the DSWD if she can adopt him.