For residents of Sabon garin Kuraye, a sleepy community at Charanchi local government area of Katsina state, Friday the 28th of September will remain indelible in their mind as it marked the day the community witnessed the birth of a child with three legs, Muazu Elazeh reports
When labour met her that day, Maryamu Bala, as all expectant mothers do, expected to be delivered of a normal healthy baby.
After a few hours, the child was delivered in the wee hours of Friday. It came out like every other child except that, unlike other children, it had a third limb with complete features of human legs.
It was observed that the baby’s third leg which sprung out at its waist, has the complete features of human limbs except that it looked smaller than the two normal legs.
Not surprising however, residents of the community, most of who confessed to seeing the situation for the first time in their lives, reportedly thronged into the house of Mallama Maryamu to catch a glimpse of the baby, which most of them described as one of the wonders of almighty God.
“We marveled at the sight of another limb and were at first taken aback but then, we consoled ourselves with our faith in almighty Allah and the belief that He can do whatever He wishes” Malama Hadiza Galu, 33, a resident of Sabon Garin Kuraye, said.
Although hospital officials had certified both the baby and the mother to be in “sound health”, residents of the area described the situation as rare even as some appeared filled with awe as they gazed at the sight of the baby.
Speaking to LEADERSHIP WEEKEND, Mallam Abdurrahman Sale, the child’s grandfather said “the whole thing is surprising and it is a lesson for humanity. But as a Muslim, I know there is nothing Allah cannot do and I think this is one of His countless wonders.”
Malama Maryamu, mother of the baby, told our correspondent that it was her sixth child and while carrying the pregnancy, she never felt any abnormalities and so had no inkling at all that the baby would be born with the rare condition.
“I never felt any different from my previous pregnancies and I had a very smooth delivery” said Mallama Maryamu , noting that in all of her twenty eight years, “I have never heard of or seen a child born with these features.”
“When the child came out with three legs, the first thing I did as a Muslim was to recite ‘Suratul Fatiha’ and ‘Kalmatul shahada’ after which I thanked God for the blessing.”
“My prayer since the delivery has been to ask for God’s intervention so that if it is possible to remove the third leg, let it be removed and if it is not possible, May Allah bless the child for us and help him grow up to realise what he has been destined to become in life” she added.
She was, however quick to appeal to well- meaning citizens and the local government council to assist the family with needed funds to embark on surgery.
Although the the Transition Management Chairman of Charanchi Local government, Alhaji Mustapha Galadima could not be reached, the Vice chairman, Musa Kalla Bala Kuraye said the council had sent a delegation to the child’s family and assured of necessary support noting, “we will foot all the bills incurred at the cause of the surgery and we have given the parents our word to support them in all ways possible.”
Dr Sabiu Giade is a consultant, Pediatrics and the Chief Medical Director of Turai Yaradua Maternal and Child Hospital. He told our correspondent that what is erroneously referred to as ‘third leg’ is ‘ parasitic conjoined twins’ noting, “it is actually supposed to be a set of conjoined twins but the other part did not develop.”