SINGAPORE - A six-month-old boy was found motionless on Dec 28 in a Sengkang flat where he was left in the care of a nanny by his parents.
According to the boy's death certificate, the cause of death is cardiorespiratory failure, said Shin Min Daily News.
The Chinese-language newspaper reported on Monday (Jan 3) that the boy, Yong Jing Yu, had apparently stopped breathing before he was admitted to Sengkang General Hospital.
In response to queries from The Straits Times, the police said they were alerted to a case of unnatural death at Block 158D Rivervale Crescent at 6.25pm on Dec 28.
A baby was taken to hospital unconscious and subsequently pronounced dead at the hospital. Investigations are ongoing, the police added.
The boy's father, Mr Yong Zhen Cheng, 30, told Shin Min that his son had always been a healthy child who met his developmental milestones.
His wife, Ms Du Jing Lei, 30, said: "The night before, my son's appetite was still good.
"When I took my baby to the nanny's home, he was still very happy."
The couple, both Malaysians, told Shin Min it would have cost $2,000 every month to send their child to a childcare centre as they are not Singapore citizens.
They had engaged the nanny, who wanted to be known only as Madam Liu, as she charges only $900 a month for her services.
The couple, who are accountants, found Madam Liu through an online website and decided to hire her, as the nanny claimed to have more than 10 years of experience in early childhood education.
This had been the best option for the couple as their household monthly income was only about $4,000, they told Shin Min.
When reporters visited Madam Liu's home in Sengkang, she said she never expected such a situation to happen.
In addition to the six-month-old boy, she was also babysitting two other children - a one-year-old and a nine-month-old.
Madam Liu said that the six-month-old boy had fallen asleep in his playpen near the living room at about 3pm on Dec 28.
At 6.15pm, she was about to bathe the baby boy when she discovered that half his face had turned purple and that he had stopped breathing.
Madam Liu said there were no blankets or pillows in the playpen.
She tried to wake the baby but he was unresponsive. She then called the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) for assistance. Madam Liu said: "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."
On Monday night, Mr Yong told The Straits Times that Madam Liu had called his sister to apologise. She was unable to contact the couple as they were collecting their son’s ashes on Monday morning.
Mr Yong said: “We just want to know what happened. We have lost our only child. He was so cute and healthy. He had absolutely no health conditions.”
Neighbours The Straits Times spoke to said they were unaware of the incident.