Mom gives birth at chicken outlet

Penwell Dlamini

Penwell Dlamini

A busy Chicken Licken outlet at the Bree Street taxi rank in central Johannesburg became a makeshift maternity ward last week.

A young woman, aged about 21 years, stumbled into the store saying she was not well, only to give birth moments later.

Manager Ismail Logat said the pregnant woman entered the outlet at about 7.40am on Friday and complained that she was feeling sick.

"My staff suspected that the woman was about to give birth and I immediately called the emergency number 10111 for an ambulance," he said.

Logat said the call centre operators kept telling him to hold on, eventually transferring him to five different people - but without success.

"I then immediately closed the doors to allow the outlet's workers to help the woman."

He then summoned the help of Yakus Essack who has a surgery in the same building. By the time Essack arrived, the woman had already given birth to a baby boy.

Thandiwe Mariri, a staff member at the outlet, said: "She told me her water had already broken, and we used plastics and cloths to help deliver the baby."

Essack said when he arrived the mother was holding her baby, with the umbilical cord "still under her dress".

After Essack performed the necessary post-delivery procedures, an ambulance eventually arrived and took the baby and mother to the Hillbrow Polyclinic.