Freedom Mupanedemo Syndication Writer
Bizarre and unthinkable as it might sound, but the story of a woman giving birth to a frog is something the people of Gokwe have learnt to accept, albeit, with astounding shock and empathy.For Precious Nyathi (36), abdominal bloating, dizziness, nausea, high blood pressure, a change in diet and all the typical signs that come with discomfiture of pregnancy was confirmation of her third pregnancy.“For eight months, it was part of the rhythm of pregnancy.
Of course, for someone who is not a first timer, the entire discomfort would one day climax into the form of labour pains, before eventually resulting in the cuddling of a bouncing newly born baby.
Is that not motherhood?
Like any other expecting modern woman, Nyathi had to register with Gokwe District Hospital for safe delivery and she routinely visited the hospital for check-ups and no complications were detected. No signs of anything abnormal.And last week, eight-months into her pregnancy and while doing her domestic chores at home in Sidojiwe village under Chief Njelele, she unexpectedly went into labour and the bizarre and unthinkable occurred when she delivered a disfigured feature that looked more like a frog.
“My aunt raised the alarm to village midwives and also called my husband when I went into labour and when he and some elderly midwives in the village arrived, I was writhing in pain while lying on the floor of my bedroom,” said Nyathi.
The elderly women prepared to welcome the baby, but the expected baby turned to be a strange creature that looked like a frog, leaving the care-givers bewildered.
Nyathi, who was also eager to see her “newly born baby”, said she was equally shocked and immediately passed out after it dawned on her that she had delivered a strange object.“Whatever happened next is for others to tell because when I later gained consciousness, I was in hospital. Even the staff at the hospital could not explain what could have been the cause of this,” sobbed Nyathi.
She said nurses at Gokwe District Hospital could only confirm that she actually went into labour and nothing more, nothing less.“Everything was okay including the blood pressure so I was discharged, but I had no child.“I am still confused how and why a curse of this nature chose to befall me,” she said.
Nyathi said the frog-like creature was declared dead at the hospital, but her heartbroken husband, Nomore Nyathi, insisted on carrying the strange creature home.
Nyathi later took the creature that had dried biltong-like to Chief Njelele where it was later burnt.A self-proclaimed prophet from among the crowd that had gathered to witness the incident said she had been bewitched.“The prophet revealed that my wife was bewitched by my first wife,” he said.
Nyathi said he was casting his witch-hunt net wider by consulting even with traditional healers before he confronts the supposed culprit.“What is obvious in this case is that there is an act of witchcraft and to find out who is the culprit I must do it quickly, consulting even n’angas and if everything points to one person then I will take action from there.
“For my wife, it is a hellish experience which will continue to haunt us as a family,” he said.Chief Njelele said a number of strange and weird things do happen in his area, but the “frog” debacle was a first.
“It’s stranger than fiction! When I heard that a woman had given birth to a frog in my area, I had to call authorities at Gokwe District Hospital who confirmed that Nyathi was indeed one of their patients at the hospital.
“There were no explanations as to what happened to her pregnancy though,” he said.Chief Njelele said he was contemplating ex-communicating villagers fingered in any form of witchcraft.“I think Njelele area is becoming notorious for witchcraft and it is high time I act.“The only available solution is to ex-communicate such elements from our area. I don’t know where they will go,” he said.
However, medical experts dismissed as fiction allegations that Nyathi delivered a frog.“That is fiction. This woman could have mistaken a cyst for pregnancy,” said one prominent medical practitioner, Dr Ralph Ndoro.Dr Ndoro said it was also possible that Nyathi could have been a victim of congenital fetal abnormality.
“But even if this was the case (congenital fetal abnormality), at eight months she was supposed to deliver a deformed fetus with some human features and not a complete frog,” he said.
Another medical expert, Dr Partson Ndebele, said Nyathi could have been a victim of anencephaly, a condition which he said results in a baby being born without the skull and brain.
“This occurs during the early development of an unborn baby, but affects 1 out of 10 000 babies,” he said.Dr Ndebele said some drugs also causes birth defects.According to online sources, cases of women giving birth to strange babies are common the world over and only last year, a woman in Benin city in West Africa made headlines after she gave birth to a horse baby while a snake baby was also born in Saudi Arabia
In all cases such strange babies do not survive beyond a day. — Zimpapers Syndication.