Gosiame Thamara Sithole’s account, in which she claimed to have given birth to ten children simultaneously, quickly went viral.
The full truth was discovered after officials dug further than they had first thought, which sparked controversy and got people talking.
In June 2021, the news outlet Pretoria News broke the story about the unusual birth. They stated that the 37-year-old woman gave birth to her children in South Africa at the Steve Biko Academic Hospital.
Sithole and her spouse Teboho, from a working-class township in the Gauteng province close to Johannesburg, are said to have been astonished when their decuplets were born after initially being informed that they were expecting eight infants. A lot of well-known publications and websites, including BBC, reported on this amazing tale.
The infants were referred to as the “Tembisa 10” by Pretoria News, and the tale appeared credible because it included several specifics. Nothing at the time indicated that the entire tale might have been made up.
Prior to giving birth to her children, Sithole reportedly spoke with Pretoria News. She reportedly stated to the newspaper: “I am astonished by my pregnancy. At first, it was difficult. I had a cold. I found it challenging. I’m getting used to it, but it’s still difficult. Even if I can’t feel the agony anymore, it’s still difficult. I simply ask God to help me deliver each of my children in good health and for both my children and I to survive the delivery. That would make me happy.
A story of a South African woman Gosiame Sithole who allegedly gave birth to 10 babies earlier this month is not true. https://t.co/IB9WT3T33Y
— Mpasho News (@MpashoNews) June 24, 2021
Authorities decided to dig further, especially because the story became international news and the happy couple received a lot of donations, as a result of many people being skeptical. A thorough examination revealed that neither a state-run nor a private hospital had any documentation of such a birth.
What’s more, according to authorities, Sithole was never actually pregnant.
The Gauteng Provincial Government stated that “it has now been established by medical professionals that Ms. Sithole did not give birth to any babies in recent times.”
Additionally, it has been proven that she was not pregnant recently.
Why would someone lie about how many children they had or even that they were pregnant in the first place? was the issue that arose. The author of the article that first presented the tale stood by his assertions, thus it appears that officials don’t know the answer to this. He insisted the tale was true for a very long time.
The mother of the decuplets, Ms. Sithole, the editor of the Pretoria News, Piet Rampedi, as well as Independent Media and its chairperson, Dr. Iqbal Survé, have all made claims that the story is “fake news” in an effort to discredit it. It is not, and Independent Media stands by its report.
Pretoria News editor Piet Rampedi has apologised to his colleagues for the damage his story on SA’s so-called “Thembisa 10” babies did to Independent Media’s reputation. https://t.co/nxfM16ifPt
— Times LIVE (@TimesLIVE) June 22, 2021
The journalist who first reported the sensational birth, Piet Rampedihe, who was also good friends with Sithole and her husband, admitted that his account might have contained some errors as the authorities prepared to take legal action against him. He said that he saw Sithole with a significant pregnancy bump and that he only found out she had 10 children when she texted him to let him know.
“Even though I continue to support Sithole’s pregnancy, there were several ways the story could have been handled better. Am I capable of handling the situation much better? Definitely! in particular, the verification procedure. Sincerity be told, I never approached the decuplets case as a formal investigation. According to Piet, I didn’t employ a checklist or other kind of investigation instrument.
He continued and published the amazing narrative since he thought they had no excuse to lie to him.
Why the woman lied about the pregnancy and the babies is still a mystery. The accused mother has been offered assistance in the interim.