By Sodiq Yusuf
Childbirth is a blessing. Religious texts overemphasize the fact that children are a good heritage from the creator. Often times, when issues of children, childcare and their development are discussed, it is noted that the parents have a crucial role to play.
The world itself is a place where mysteries and dynamic things happen. In fact, human beings are told in their everyday sojourn of how imperative it is to expect the unexpected.
On July 24, 2020, the family of Ajala Awojobi of New Town, Ipetumodu, in Ife North Local Government Area of the State of Osun welcomed a set of triplets. Although, not unaware of the divine blessings, the family is in dire need of help.
Speaking with OSUN DEFENDER during a visit on Tuesday, Awojobi recounted how the wonders of God came when he had decided to stop childbearing.
“I had stopped child bearing for a long time. In fact, our last child is 5 years old. But you know women; I had to consider my wife’s plea to have one more, after so much pressure. Now I have 2 boys, 3 girls. I don’t have a house. I live in my brother’s house.
“The whole thing started around January when we got information that there is the possibility of having triplets. I was wondering how I would cope with it, because my only source of livelihood is farming. My wife is an OYES cadet. I wondered how our little income would be enough to cater for three kids at a go.
“It was during the first scan that she was told not to try bearing the child alone. We were afraid of what would happen because we had little resources to eat. We had two children before. I am living in my brother’s house. He owns this place and because he’s in Lagos, he asked me to come and stay here.
“My wife was admitted in April during the Coronavirus pandemic lockdown. I spent nothing less than N150, 000 within 4 days at the OAU THC in Ile-Ife. The pregnancy nearly resulted in a miscarriage so they had to run some tests and scan to ensure that the womb is safe. We had purchased all the needed materials for the surgery before a medical practitioner; Prof. Akinyemi came to instruct that my wife should be placed on bed rest rather than the operation.
“I complained bitterly of not having the finances to keep her on the hospital bed from April to August and demanded that I took her to one of my relatives who is a Senior Matron and had a clinic for checks every day.”
Awojobi continued “While she was on hospital bed, I took over the house chores and fended for the family before I headed for the farm everyday. We Thank God that our efforts were not in vain. On July 2, the first day they told us to wait for delivery; we did not wait at the hospital. It was until July 24 that my wife gave birth. They had told us to wait, we left and my wife wrote an undertaking not to run away. We were at home for two additional weeks.
“Prior to that time, we had been spending close to N20, 000 anytime we visited the hospital. That was every fortnight! It was after 2 weeks that we returned to the hospital that they asked us how we did it that a set of triplets spent 36 weeks in their mother’s womb. They told us it had never happened before. They said the established time of delivery had not elapsed between 33-34 weeks. They said how come? That did we remember they said we should stay two weeks earlier?
“We told them we were afraid of spending more when we didn’t have. They were curious to know what we used without it resulting into miscarriage and we told them we used nothing. To the glory of God, I got a cooperative loan of about N500, 000. I spent nothing less than N380, 000 to get all the materials needed. That was in addition to a hospital bill of N120, 000 after we were discharged. We Thank God. Since then, we had been battling the situation. We had the naming ceremony last Friday. The children are hale and hearty.”
Narrating his experience, the father of the triplets solicited government’s help in securing employment for himself and his wife, as well as the upkeep of his children.
“My wife and I are educated. I graduated with Higher National Diploma in Business Administration from the Osun State Polytechnic, Iree in 2012. My wife holds an HND in Survey and Geoformatics from the Osun State College of Technology, Esa-Oke. I’ve been in farming for a long time. Before I returned to farming fully, I was a palm wine tapper for 12 years. I have an aged father and mother. I am a popular palm wine tapper across the four local government areas in Ifeland. From Moro to Ife town to Ipetumodu, everyone knows me.
“I am appealing for help from government, well-meaning individuals, philanthropists and other members of the public. My wife and I are graduates. It is because of unemployment that I became a farmer. I need employment, my wife needs too.
“I have secured credit facilities from a number of people. I feed everyone in this house. My father, mother and mother-in-law are here with me. My father has been a retired primary school teacher since 2010. He has not received his pension since then. I spend nothing less than N7, 000 – N10, 000 on Feeding everyday. Yesterday, I spent N12, 000 because I went to buy children’s food. My mother is a trader.
“My wife is into hairdressing, but has been unable to work since we got wind of the fact that we were expecting triplets in January; so the shop is closed. I had never received a vision that I will have triplets. The only relation I think is that my father and mother are from twin blood.”
Awojobi stated further that he was not planning to get married because he was afraid of poverty. “I did not even want to get married because I was afraid of poverty. I was only dreaming of a good future where I would live in affluence and enjoy wealth. I had the fear of poverty that could result from marriage. I went to school with proceeds from palmwine. I had a 20-year old motorcycle which I used to make money in addition to income from palmwine when I was still in school.
“The palmwine business really helped me a lot. There was a time I bought a mini bus with the proceeds.”