Hundreds of babies born at hospitals across SA

DOUBLE JOY: Ntombifuthi Hlatshwayo, the mother of 2013 New Year's Day twins Nathi and Nkosinathi, at Rahima Moosa Hospital in Johannesburg. Photo: Antonio Muchave
DOUBLE JOY: Ntombifuthi Hlatshwayo, the mother of 2013 New Year's Day twins Nathi and Nkosinathi, at Rahima Moosa Hospital in Johannesburg. Photo: Antonio Muchave

"We encourage the mother to take good care of their babies and ensure that they receive the necessary immunisations to prevent ailments affecting mostly children"

A HOSPITAL in Sebokeng, in the Vaal, had a special gift yesterday with the birth of the hospital's first New Year's Day baby in three years.

Baby Thandolwethu Magwaza was born at about 2am to mother Nandi at Clinix Naledi-Nkanyezi Private Hospital.

The 22-year-old mother was thrilled to have ended the dry spell after six hours of labour.

Thandolwethu weighed in at 2.9kg and measured 51cm.

Hospitals in the six provinces Sowetan was able to reach had welcomed 245 New Year's Day babies by the time of going to print yesterday.

Limpopo led the pack with an astounding 95 births in the province yesterday.

Provincial MEC for health and social development Norman Mabasa said yesterday the first baby was born at Jane Furse Hospital at exactly midnight.

Limpopo recorded 118 births on Christmas Day last week.

Gauteng followed with 57 newborns in seven hospitals by midday yesterday.

Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital had the most births in the province.

"We congratulate all the mothers who gave birth today and also encourage them to take good care of their babies and ensure that they receive the necessary immunisations to prevent ailments affecting mostly children," said health MEC Hope Papo.

The Free State welcomed 38 newborn babies across the province between midnight and 8am.

The first, a boy, arrived five minutes into the New Year at Phumelela District Hospital in Vrede and was followed by twin boys at Bongani Regional, in Welkom, two minutes later.

Acting MEC for health Msebenzi Zwane applauded all the health professionals who had tirelessly ensured the success of these births and the provision of safe and high-quality maternal health services.

Mpumalanga had recorded 25 New Year's Day births by midday yesterday.

Tintswalo Hospital in Bushbuckridge had the highest number of births with 11 babies born.

"It's actually been a slow day because by this time on Christmas [Day] there were over 70 babies born," said provincial health department spokesman Dumisani Mlangeni.

"There was one girl born at exactly midnight."

In the Eastern Cape, 17 births were recorded among selected hospitals yesterday.

Provincial health spokesman Sizwe Kupelo said 17 births had been recorded so far but the number did not include East London and other parts of the province.

Thirteen babies were born in five hospitals in the North West on New Year's Day. The first baby was born at Job Shimankana Tabane Hospital two minutes after midnight.

Health department spokesman Tebogo Lekgethwane said the baby was then followed by four boys at the same hospital.

Onkarabile Monkge was the first of two babies who helped kick off 2013 at Mahikeng Provincial Hospital.

Onkarabile was born at 12.40am.

"She was 3kg and born without complications," said Joyce Monkge, her mother.

"She's been an angel so far. She barely cries and she's been sleeping most of the time, which was great because we were up for the last two days getting ready for her," said her mother.

Provincial spokesman Tebogo Lekgethwane said the department welcomed the newborns.

"We are fighting child mortality and we are proud to say all the children born today and their mothers were healthy," he said.

- Boitumelo Tshehle, Frank Maponya, Ntwaagae Seleka and Nomaswazi Nkosi

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