Meet Nigerian Mother With 17 Children. PHOTOS



Meet Nigerian Mother With 17 Children. PHOTOS

In a rare twist of fate, Hajia Gambo Sawaba, the pioneer Northern Women’s Rights activist, philanthropist and politician who became famous for the love and care she showed the poor, especially women in northern Nigeria, came alive again.

A 34-year-old woman, Hauwa’u Suleiman, a mother of 13 children, was recently delivered of a set of quadruplets at the Gambo Sawaba General Hospital in Zaria, Kaduna State.

The birth of any baby, single or multiple, brings joy to parents, the immediate community and the nation. However, for a 34-year-old with 13 children from eight pregnancies consisting of multiple births, including sets of triplets and twins, her fertility seems to be getting progressively ‘better’ with each pregnancy.

While we rejoice at the new births, we are conscious of the fact that a lot seems to be wrong here. The husband is a driver and we doubt that his income can conveniently cater for 17 children.
Even if the wife is employed or doing her own business, 17 children are a handful and she cannot possibly combine taking care of the children with any other work.

What this situation means is that the man has to struggle to feed, provide shelter and all other necessities of life for the family.

Every child belongs to the state and as such care must be taken to make sure that each child gets its rights from the governments and the parents as well.

It is exactly for this reason, and to give each child the best nurture, education and healthcare, that most nations have policies to regulate how many children each couple can have.

Some countries introduce incentives like child support and scholarships for a certain number of children.
These parents have brought 17 other children to the world, and with their limited resources cannot effectively cater for all of them.

We might rhetorically ask, what next? Being Northern Muslims, the almajiri system might be an attractive option, so some of the kids might be sent off to the clerics, and the clerics in turn would send them into the streets, making them vulnerable targets to recruiters for all sorts of social ills.
They might find outside their houses more comfortable because the parents cannot truly cater for them. These parents might inadvertently be contributing to the number of social miscreants because they can neither give adequate emotional nor provide all the necessary needs of growing children.
Today, Nigeria is the poverty capital of the world for a reason, the population does not match with viable economic productivity.

Government cannot take care of the population because the resources are not just there. The illiteracy level is too high and as such most individuals do not understand that having too many children is a problem for both parents and the state.

Early marriage for girls is another reason for too many children. For a 34-year-old to have had 17 children shows she might not have spent enough time schooling.

Hauwa’u might not be aware of her reproductive rights and the fact that she can actually control the number of children she can have, based on her resources.

The husband too might be ignorant of any form of family planning. This is the time for governments at all levels to begin massive education for the citizens and the healthcare sector equipped well enough for citizen education about reproductive health and population control. Citizens must be educated about responsible parenthood.

The parochial idea that children are never to be counted is a very myopic and delusional social conditioning that encourages population growth in a century that has all the education and science that help parents plan for more manageable number of children.
There must be a sustained and well planned citizen enlightenment backed with good education and healthcare if Nigeria is to develop along with its children.

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