The listeriosis trauma gets even worse for mom and baby

18 June 2018 - 06:46
By wendy knowler AND Wendy Knowler
Monthla Ngobeni after she fell ill.
Image: Supplied Monthla Ngobeni after she fell ill.

Theto Ngobeni is not quite six months old and about to undergo a third operation to insert a shunt into the ventricles of her brain to prevent excess fluid from causing damage. And all because her mother had a thing for Mielie Kip chicken polony and other Enterprise products.

Born in a Polokwane hospital three days before Christmas‚ baby Theto and her mother Monthla are among 1‚049 South Africans to contract listeriosis in the world’s worst outbreak of the deadly food-borne disease.

The latest National Institute of Communicable Diseases’ listeriosis report reveals that 209 of those people have died.

In late April Tiger Brands admitted that its independent tests had confirmed that the batch of processed meats which led the institute to its factory door did indeed contain ST6 – the unique strain of listeria responsible for South Africa’s listeriosis outbreak.

The number of confirmed cases has dropped dramatically since certain Tiger Brands Enterprise products were named as the outbreak source, prompting the company to recall all its processed meat products. Sales of the polony brands which remain on the market are down 75%.