By Dave Andrusko
After more than a year, Halima Cissé and the first-ever set of surviving nonuplets have made their way home from Morocco to Mali.
“The Ministry of Health and Social Development of Mali announced on Dec. 13 that the nonuplets, nine babies born at once who made history in May 2021, had safely travelled from Morocco, where they were born, to their home country of Mali,” Kait Hanson reported. The nine babies (five girls and four boys) were named Mohammed VI, Oumar, Elhadji, Bah, Kadidia, Fatouma, Hawa, Adama and Oumou and were born May 4, 2021, according to Hanson [www.today.com/parents/babies/halima-cisse-mali-nine-babies-rcna61810].
Not surprisingly, the now 19-month-old babies were premature. However, according to The Ministry of Health and Social Development, they are all healthy.
Dr. Youssef Alaoui, the director of the private clinic in Morocco where Cissé gave birth, told the TODAY Show that
From the time of Cissé’s arrival, Alaoui said he and his team were able to extend her pregnancy five weeks before she delivered at 30 weeks.
“At the Casablanca Ain Borja Clinic, we’ve seen all sorts of complicated medical situations, but I have to say that the birth of nonuplets … that’s a first for us,” he told TODAY.com. “It’s a first for the whole world, and we’re proud to have had this extraordinary experience thanks to our medical and technical expertise.”
10 doctors and 25 paramedics cared for Halima Cissé until delivery — “but delivering nine babies was a shock.”
“The glimpse we got from the ultrasound made it seem like there were only seven, so you can imagine our surprise when we discovered nine of them during the birth,” Alaoui told TODAY.com in July 2021. “Luckily this didn’t faze us, since we have one of the largest neonatal resuscitation services in Morocco. Our teams were ready to welcome these children into the world and able to treat them in the best conditions.”
Earlier this year, when the babies turned one, dad Abdelkader Arby offered BBC Afrique an update on their progress.
“They’re all crawling now,” he told the outlet. “Some are sitting up and can even walk if they hold on to something.”