Birthday girl on special day
WHILE millions were celebrating Mandela Day, a woman gave birth in her shack and cut the umbilical cord herself while waiting for paramedics.
Aviva Mashilo, 38, gave birth to a baby girl, Lebogang, at about 6am yesterday in her one-room shack in Diepsloot.
This was almost two hours after neighbours had phoned the ambulance when she started having contractions.
Neighbour Nthabiseng Pikoko was woken by screams coming from Mashilo's shack at about 4am and called the ambulance.
"The ambulance was taking time to arrive and Aviva was getting tired and could not wait any longer .
"We were all running around in panic trying to get the ambulance to come here quickly but we were being sent from pillar to post by staff at Coronation [Rahima Moosa] Hospital," she said.
Another neighbour, Gail Oss, who arrived to minutes after Mashilo gave birth, said the third-time mom looked calm. "I was freaked out more than she was and I was concerned about their health. But she is a strong woman."
Mashilo's partner of eight years, Oupa Kajeno, said the ambulance only arrived at about 8am, and by then Mashilo had already gone to their local clinic for a check-up and later to Rahima Moosa where she and the baby spent most of the day.
The mom and baby were given a clean bill of health and discharged.
Kajeno, a first-time dad, said: "It couldn't have happened on a more perfect day when we celebrate the birthday of one of the greatest men who ever lived. I would call her Mandela's girl because she is special and born on a special day." - firstname.lastname@example.org