POLL | Is it right to ask for pictures of the 'Thembisa 10'?

10 June 2021 - 13:05 By cebelihle bhengu
The 37-year-old mother of 'decuplets' was identified as Gosiame Thamara Sithole. Stock photo.
The 37-year-old mother of 'decuplets' was identified as Gosiame Thamara Sithole. Stock photo.

The family of a woman who was reported to have given birth to 10 babies will not release pictures of the country's most famous decuplets because their mother is allegedly not permitted into the NICU with a cellphone.

TimesLIVE reported that the babies, known as the “Thembisa 10" are at an undisclosed hospital in Pretoria where they are receiving medical care. 

The babies have dominated local and international headlines after Pretoria News reported on Tuesday that Gosiame Thamara Sithole, 37, had given birth to 10 children.

Both the national and Gauteng governments said they were unable to find any records of the births, while Ekurhuleni mayor Mzwandile Masina confirmed that his office had met with the family, and released a statement on their behalf confirming the births.

The reports led to several calls on social media for pictures of the decuplets.

The babies' aunt told TimesLIVE on Wednesday evening that the children were  born prematurely and were undergoing medical treatment.

“The babies were born and are still in incubators fighting for their lives. They came at 29 weeks; the mother is still weak. And as a black family, we want to protect them. This is a sensitive issue,” she said. 

She said five babies were born through natural birth and the other five through a caesarean. She said the mother was in high spirits and was healing at the hospital.

UPDATE JUNE 18: Social development minister Lindiwe Zulu said on Friday, June 18, that she is waiting for consolidated information before “going public” on the saga. Zulu told TimesLIVE she held a meeting with the provincial department of social development and the health department and “we have a few loose ends that needed to be sorted out” before briefing the public about what really happened. Both the Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) and the provincial health department have said they are unable to verify the births of the decuplets.