M'sian Parents Working In SG Lose Baby Boy After Sending Him To Nanny

After a nap, six-month-old Yong Jing Yu was said to have fallen unconscious with his face turning purple. He was declared dead after being rushed to the hospital.

Cover image via Shin Min Daily News 新明日报 (Facebook) & Shin Min Daily News via The Straits Times

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A Malaysian couple has lost their baby boy after he was sent to a babysitter in Sengkang, Singapore on 28 December

The Straits Times citing Shin Min Daily News reported that the six-month-old baby died of cardiorespiratory failure.

The police told The Straits Times that they received a distress call about a case of unnatural death at Block 158D Rivervale Crescent at 6.25pm last Tuesday.

It is learnt that the baby was rushed to Sengkang General Hospital for rescue after he stopped breathing and fell unconscious. He was pronounced dead by doctors on arrival.

The police are currently still investigating the case.

Father Yong Zhen Cheng (right) and mother Du Jing Lei looking at a photo of their baby, Yong Jing Yu.

Image via Shin Min Daily News 新明日报 (Facebook)

The boy's father told Shin Min Daily News that his child had been a healthy baby who met his developmental milestones

Both parents, Yong Zhen Cheng and Du Jing Lei, are 30-year-old Malaysians working as accountants in the city. According to China Press, Du is a permanent resident of Singapore.

Because their child — named Yong Jing Yu — was not a Singaporean, it would cost the parents SGD2,000 (about RM6,179) to send him to a childcare centre.

Instead, they looked for a nanny on the Internet and settled for a 40-year-old babysitter — known only as Liu.

She is said to have 10 years of experience in early childhood education and charged the couple SGD900 (about RM2,779) for babysitting Jing Yu.

As the couple made about SGD4,000 (about RM12,352) a month, they thought Liu was the best choice for them at that time.

Other than taking care of six-month-old Jing Yu, Liu also babysat two other children, a one-year-old and a nine-month-old

Speaking to reporters yesterday, 3 January, Liu said she did not think that taking care of three babies would make her too busy.

She said she had been taking care of Jing Yu for four months and described him as a light sleeper who could be easily awakened by sounds, reported China Press.

Thus, she usually put him to sleep in a room with the door closed.

Yong and Du packing up their son's belongings.

Image via Shin Min Daily News 新明日报 (Facebook)

On the day of the incident, Jing Yu fell asleep in his playpen near the living room at about 3pm.

Liu said that there were no blankets or pillows in the playpen.

"At about 6.15pm, as I was going to help him take a bath, I realised that he was faced down and half of his face was purple," the babysitter recollected.

"He was not breathing anymore but his body had not become stiff."

Frightened and confused, Liu tried to wake Jing Yu but he was unresponsive. She immediately called the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) for assistance.

"I followed the instructions (of paramedics) to press against his chest and gently massage his back until SCDF could arrive at the scene. But it was useless," The Straits Times quoted her as saying.

Yong told reporters on Monday that he and his wife were still clueless about what had happened to their son even though it has been six days since he passed

Prior to the incident, they had thought of changing babysitters after Jing Yu was under Liu's care for three months, reported China Press.

According to them, they had caught Liu's perfunctory conduct a few times. Yong said he occasionally found red marks on Jing Yu's body.

"At the time, I thought maybe my son scratched himself. After several inquiries, the nanny said that my son was injured by other children under her care," said the father.

He pointed out that his son was scratched on his forehead. A day before his passing, he was even hit in the nose with a toy by another child. He suffered a red mark near his nose.

His mother Du added, "At first I thought the nanny was okay, but after a while, (I felt) she became more and more careless. One time, I saw her chatting with another parent while he was crying in her arms. "

"When I picked him up, he felt hot to touch. I got home and found that his body temperature was 39°C."

Following the incident, Liu said that she is willing to kneel down and apologise to Yong and Du

The babysitter explained that she did not accompany Jing Yu to the hospital on the day of the incident because she had to take care of the two other babies.

She also said that the reason she has yet to contact the parents is because the case is still under investigation and the police told her to minimise her contact with them, reported China Press.

"I know that if I call them now, I will hear unpleasant words. And I can accept this," she was quoted as saying.

"Even if I were asked to kneel down and apologise, I am willing to do that. The baby had an accident in my house. It was a human life. And I never wanted it to happen."

"I love children, that is why I am a babysitter. I never wanted this kind of thing to happen. I'm really sad. Now, this thing has become a traumatic experience for me."

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