Page last updated at 14:31 GMT, Monday, 23 February 2009

Nigerian sextuplets' mother dies


A woman who gave birth to a set of sextuplets over the weekend in Nigeria has died of complications.

Ajoke Bello, 32, gave birth to the six babies by Caesarean section operation on Thursday and was initially in a stable condition.

But she developed complications from excessive bleeding at hospital in Sagamu, Ogun State, south-west Nigeria.

The naturally conceived babies - three girls and three boys - were in a stable condition, said medical officials.

Two of the babies were transferred on Saturday to the intensive care unit of a private hospital in Lagos, where their condition improved.

'Unfortunate incident'

Mrs Bello died at the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital in the early hours of Sunday.

Professor Femi Ajayi, the chairman of the board of the hospital, confirmed her death to the Nigerian Tribune newspaper: "It was an unfortunate incident.

"The doctors and nurses at the hospital put in their best to ensure that the woman lived.

"She was under close monitoring as the medical team did not leave any stone unturned to ensure that she was alive."

The BBC's Fidelis Mbah in Lagos says charity groups have been making donations for the upkeep of the babies.

The governor of Ogun State, Gbenga Daniel, had visited Mrs Bello in hospital on Saturday and promised the government would give all necessary assistance to her family.

According to the figures from the World Health Organization, published in 2007, Nigeria's maternal mortality rate is the second highest in the world, after India.

Over half a million women die in childbirth annually around the world, according to the WHO, and Nigeria alone accounts for 10% of these deaths.

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