Nearly two weeks after their birth, a set of conjoined twins are still being taken care of by their parents at home, which medical experts said was capable of jeopardizing their survival.
The twins, all females, were born on January 30, 2020 at home as the mother only attended ante-natal clinic once.
The couple lives in Kadege of Tudun Wadan Soba, Soba local government of Kaduna state.
Speaking to Arewa Trust Weekly the father of the conjoined twins, Muhammad Bashir, said he could not take them to hospital for medical attention, because he did not have the means to do so.
Muhammad said his wife, Zainab Sale, was forced to deliver the babies at home because his major priority was to get what to put on the table for the family.
He said he was only a peasant farmer and because he could not live on his produce he was forced to augment his income by pushing wheelbarrow.
He said he was in the market struggling with his wheelbarrow when his younger brother came to tell him that his wife was delivered of twins.
He added: “There is nothing to be surprised about, as our tradition here doesn’t encourage visiting hospitals. Most of our childbirths here are done at home. This is not her first childbirth. Even the first one, she was delivered of the baby at home.”
Muhammad said members of his community did not like going to hospitals because of demands often made at health facilities, hence they rely on herbs and other traditional methods of treatment.
He said: “It is only when sickness is out of control that we go to hospital. Therefore, on these twins, we have surrendered everything to Allah for the way out. I don’t have the means to take them to hospital. However, I will be willing to take them to hospital if I can have assistance from government or any well-meaning individual or organization.”
The village head of Kadage (Mai Anguwa), Malam Kasimu, said it was true that poverty, coupled with lack of enlightenment, made the twins to remain at home. He appealed to well-meaning Nigerians to assist the couple out of their predicament.
The mother, Zainab Sale, said the only major problem she was facing was lack of breast milk to feed the babies otherwise she was physically alright.
She added: “My breast milk seems not to be enough for the babies. We have to be buying powdered milk to augment their feeding. The two of them are girls. They have all their organs intact. I am appealing to all and sundry to kindly assist us to separate the twins. We were told that Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital can separate them.”
However, a consultant at the Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital (ABUTH), Dr. Abdulaziz Umar, said the earlier the twins are taken to hospital the brighter their chances of survival.
Dr. Umar said: “Since they are still infants, the separation would be easier. However, they have to undergo city scanning to ascertain the level of the attachment. If their livers or kidneys, for example, are attached, the separation would be a bit complicated. But if it is only the skin, it would be much easier. Whatever the case may be, it is appropriate for the parents to take them to hospital for proper check and further treatment.”
All attempts to get the chairman of the Soba local government council, Mohammed Mahmud Aliyu, for comment were abortive, as he did not respond to calls and text message sent to him.