A 20-year-old Eastern Cape mother from Libode has given birth to a baby with a rare condition called progeria – a progressive genetic disorder that causes children to age rapidly.
Progeria is also known as Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS).
This has left the family of the young mother as well as community members in shock.
The baby girl was born at home two months ago. Local mid-wives noticed that she exhibited signs that were different from most babies. Her hands are deformed and her skin was wrinkled. She is currently in hospital with her mother.
Her grandmother was one of the midwives.
The SABC quoted the grandmother saying “When she was in labour we called an ambulance but it took long to come. So she gave birth here at home. But the delivery got complicated and we hired a van to take her to hospital. We were told there that she’s disabled. I noticed during her birth that there was something strange with her. She did not cry and she was breathing through the ribs. I was shocked because that was strange. Now I hear that people are calling her names. That hurts a lot. If I had means, I would put all of them in jail,” says her grandmother.