Thai woman wants to sell her kidney to help with financial problems during Covid-19


A 64 year old Thai woman says she wants to sell her kidney to help her family with their financial problems brought on by the Covid-19. The woman from the central province Nakhon Pathom, just west of Bangkok, says that due to the disease control restrictions during the outbreak, she was forced to close her Chinese restaurant.

Since then, she’s struggled to make ends meet and help support her household which includes her daughter, 2 sons, daughter-in-law and 2 grandchildren. She says she couldn’t benefit from the Thai government’s Covid-19 relief programme because no one in her family knew how to use a smartphone to apply. On top of that, her daughter’s pay at the meatball factory was cut down to 200 baht a day. Neighbours have helped out by donating food, but it hasn’t been enough. Now, the woman has come forward to the media saying she wants to sell her kidney.

“I do not know whether it is against the law or not, but I want to sell it.”

Selling an organ is illegal… but it’s not that uncommon in Southeast Asia. According to a report from Channel News Asia, there have been several advertisements for healthy kidneys on social media in the Philippines and a number of Facebook groups where people offer to sell their kidneys. Some people offer to pay around USD$2,000 to USD$3,000 for a healthy kidney.

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Typing something along the lines of ‘kidney donation Philippines’ or ‘kidney for sale’ in the Facebook search bar will reveal countless posts by organ brokers, kidney patients and hopeful sellers who want to leverage social media’s reach to complete a deal.

A Philippine Department of Justice official told CNA that the “kidney is the most commonly trafficked organ due to its high demand in the black market and the fact that a donor can survive with only one kidney.”

In Cambodia, an 18 year old said he sold his kidney for USD$3,000, according to a report from AFP back in 2014. A neighbour had approached him about selling a kidney and he told AFP “She said you are poor, you don’t have money… if you sell your kidney you will be able to pay off your debts.”

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

Thailand News

Tanutam Thawan

Local Thai journalist speaking fluent Thai and English. Tanutam studied in Khon Kaen before attending Bangkok’s Chulalongkhorn University.

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