Battle to register 2nd baby in 1 year

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Mpumalanga - The Home Affairs department is refusing to register the birth of a premature baby because he was born only seven months after his brother, according to a report on Thursday.

The parents of the three-month old baby have been battling since his birth to get the Department of Home Affairs to issue a birth certificate for their child, reported Beeld.

Baby Abraham Jacobus (Jaco) Smith was born premature, a mere seven months after the birth of his older brother, William, Beeld reported.

Parents Braam Smith, 43, and his wife, Suzette, from Komatipoort in Mpumalanga, were told by a government official at the mobile Home Affairs office at the hospital that they couldn't register their son.

This was because the system did not make provision for more than one baby per year to be registered to the same set of parents.

The official apparently said he would contact his head office in Pretoria to solve the problem, but to date there's been no resolution.

To complicate matters, he notified his medical aid about the problem, but until he presents them with a birth certificate, they won't cover his medical expenses, which currently stand at R1 million.

The baby contracted a virus and had to be flown to Pretoria by helicopter, after which he spent a month in neo-natal ICU.

Home Affairs spokesman Ronnie Mamoepa said the department was looking into the matter. - Sapa


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