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70-year-old woman gives birth to twins in Uganda, doctor says

"Facing Fertility" Part 1: The reality of IVF
"Facing Fertility" Part 1: The reality of IVF 09:43

A 70-year-old Ugandan woman has given birth to twins, her doctor said Thursday, in what the mother hailed as a "miracle."

Safina Namukwaya described her joy at the arrival of the twins who were born on Wednesday at a medical facility in the capital Kampala, where she had received fertility treatment.

Dr. Edward Tamale Sali, a fertility specialist at the Women's Hospital International and Fertility Centre, told the BBC the mother used a donor egg and her partner's sperm for the in-vitro fertilization (IVF) procedure.

Safina Namukwaya Women's Hospital International and Fertility Centre

"This is extraordinary achievement, delivering twins to Africa's oldest mother at 70 years," Sali told AFP.

The babies were born prematurely at 31 weeks and placed in incubators, the BBC reported. 

The hospital touted the "historic event" on its Facebook page, posting a video interview with the mother and doctor.

Sali said mother and babies — a boy and a girl — were still in the care of the Women's Hospital International and Fertility Centre that he founded, but were in good health.

"There is no way to express my joy at this moment," said Namukwaya, who lives in the rural of Masaka about 75 miles west of Kampala.

"At 70 years when I'm considered weak, unable to get pregnant and deliver, or look after a baby, and here is a miracle of the twins," she told AFP by phone.

Namukwaya said she previously gave birth to a girl in 2020, after being mocked as a "cursed woman" who had previously failed to produce a child. She said her first husband died in 1992, leaving her without children, and she met her current partner in 1996.

But Namukwaya voiced dismay that her partner has not visited her since she came to the hospital for the delivery.

"Maybe he is not happy that I delivered twins because men don't want to know you are carrying more than one child in a womb for fear of may be responsibilities that come with that," she said.

In 2019, a 73-year-old Indian woman gave birth to twins following IVF treatment, the BBC reported.

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