Junior and Precious our top baby names

28 October 2016 - 09:37 By SIPHE MACANDA

South African parents have adopted creative ways of naming their babies choosingnames that express pride, joy and thankfulness. The most popular boy's name is Junior, with Precious coming in tops for girls. Although many forenames are Zulu, Xhosa, Ndebele and Swazi - most are English.The surname Dlamini was the most-registered for babies in 2014 and 2015, followed by Nkosi, Ndlovu and Khumalo .This is according to a report released by Statistics SA yesterday.Commenting on the data, Statistician-General Pali Lehohla said: "When you look at the names you see a big shift from the situation in 2001. If you look at the 2001 census you see more African boys' names. But among girls the English preference continues."Junior is most popular for the second year in a row, with Blessing at No 2 and Gift and Bandile three and four respectively.Bandile went down two places after being the second-most popular name in 2014.Siyabonga dropped from fourth in 2014 to sixth in 2015.Precious was the most popular name for girls last year, followed by Princess, Angel and Amahle. Precious was not even in the top 10 in 2014.The name Amahle, meaning the beautiful ones in Zulu, went from ninth place in 2014 to the top four in 2015.In 2014, the names Iminathi and Minenhle were at No 1 and No 2. But in 2015 Iminathi did not feature on the top 10 and Minenhle was the fifth most-popular name.Lehohla said: "The top 10 surnames generally come from the Nguni clans. The only non-Nguni surname that was in the top 10 in 2015 was Mokoena, which occupied sixth position."Lehohla also revealed yesterday that the number of stillbirth deaths had decreased."The decrease is due to the expansion of health services," Lehohla said.Analysis of the data also shows that child deaths in South Africa are characterised by higher stillbirths compared to neonatal deaths [death of a baby in the first 28 days of life].In the report Lehohla reveals that stillbirths increased dramatically from 13020 in 1997 to 25287 in 2009."Thereafter there was no consistent pattern. The total number of perinatal deaths that occurred in 2014 and were registered at Department of Home Affairs was 21908, a 3.6% decline from the 22274 perinatal deaths for 2013."He notes that parents can avoid stillbirths and neonatal deaths by taking effective and efficient care during pregnancy and special efforts such as warmth and hygiene to ensure that newborns survive the critical first seven days of life...

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