A 25-year-old woman from Mali has given birth to nine babies – two more than doctors had detected during scans.
Halima Cisse gave birth to the nonuplets in Morocco. Mali’s government flew her there for specialist care.
“I’m happy, very, very happy,” her husband told the BBC. “My wife and the babies [five girls and four boys] are doing very well.” It is extremely rare to give birth to a set of nonuplets – and complications often mean the babies do not survive.
Fanta Siby, Mali’s health minister, congratulated the medical teams in both countries for the “happy outcome”.
Ms Cisse’s pregnancy became a subject of fascination in Mali – even when it was thought she was only carrying septuplets, the Reuters news agency reports.
Doctors in the West African nation had been concerned for her welfare and the chances of the babies’ survival – so the government intervened.
After a two-week stay in a hospital in Mali’s capital, Bamako, the decision had been made to move Ms Cisse to Morocco on 30 March, Dr Siby said.
After five weeks at the Moroccan clinic, she had given birth by Caesarean section on Tuesday, the minister said.
Her husband Adjudant Kader Arby is still in Mali with the couple’s older daughter, but he says he has been in constant touch with his wife in Morocco and says he is not worried about the family’s future.
“God gave us these children. He is the one to decide what will happen to them. I’m not worried about that. When the almighty does something, he knows why,” he told BBC Afrique.
He says the family has been overwhelmed by the support they have received.
“Everybody called me! Everybody called! The Malian authorities called expressing their joy. I thank them… Even the president called me.”
The mother and her new nine babies are expected to return home in several weeks.
AFRO WORLD NEWS