On May 25 2021, Malian mum, Halima Cisse gave birth to nine babies. Yes, nine. At once. At just 25 years old, Halima became the first person in history to successfully give birth to nonuplets.

And now these nine little miracles are officially one – and on the move! Watch out!

Happy birthday x 9 

After the birth, the babies spent several weeks in intensive care in a private Ain Borja clinic in Casablanca, Morocco, and have since moved to an apartment close to the hospital.

Malian nine babies
Source:  Abdelkader Arby family

All babies are healthy, happy, and thriving and according to their proud parents, it’s been nothing short of amazing.

Nothing is better than the first year. We will remember this great moment we are going to experience,” dad, Abdeiker Arby, tells the BBC Afrique. 

On cloud nine

Halima lives with the nine babies in what Arby describes as a “medicalised flat” that belongs to the owners of the Ain Borja clinic in Casablanca where the babies were born. Halima and a team of nurses care for the nine infants, who are in perfect health.

They’re all crawling now. Some are sitting up and can even walk if they hold on to something,” Abdelkader Arby told BBC Afrique.

The proud parents spoke to the ABC and the BBC about their 9 miracles. Source: ABC

Arby, is an officer in the Malian army and travels back and forth from Mali to Morocco. The couple also has a three-year-old daughter, Souda who joined her little siblings for the first time to celebrate their first birthday.

If you look at the photo below you can see Souda holding one of the babies while being smacked in the face. Big sister life.

Source:  Abdelkader Arby family

As expected, tending to nine babies at once is no easy feat but the couple has managed exceptionally well. They credit the excellent medical care and the Malian state government for all the help.

It’s not easy but it’s great. Even if it’s tiring at times, when you look at all the babies in perfect health, [in a line] from right to left we’re relieved. We forget everything.”

Born at 30 weeks gestation

The news of the baby’s birth made headlines last year, especially as the medical team, Halima and Arby were expecting 7, not 9 babies. Only two other sets of nonuplets have ever been recorded in history, but none of them survived past a few days.

When an ultrasound confirmed the multiple pregnancy, the Malian government ordered Halima to Morocco as hospitals in Mali are ill-equipped to provide adequate care for exceptional multiple pregnancies such as this.

The newborns were born via emergency c-section at 30 weeks gestation and weighed between 500 grams and 1 kilogram. At the time of their exceptional birth, the clinic has deployed a team of around 30 staff members to care for mum and her babies.

nine babies
Three of the nine babies shortly after their birth. Source: Facebook

Halima had four boys – Mohammed VI, Oumar, Elhadji, Bah – and five girls – Kadidia, Fatouma, Hawa, Adama and Oumou.

Each one has a unique personality, their father said.

They all have different characters. Some are quiet, while other make more noise and cry a lot. Some want to be picked up all the time. They are all very different, which is entirely normal.”

The nonuplets celebrated their first birthday with a little party in their Moroccon apartment and invited a few guests from the apartment building plus the nurses.

A real treasure

The babies have not made it to Mali yet but this may be on the cards this year. Alby admits his babies are already very popular in the country.

Everyone is very keen to see the babies with their own eyes – their family, friends, our home village, the whole country.”

He also has a message for couples trying to have children:

I hope God blesses everyone who doesn’t yet have children – that they can have what we, the parents of nonuplets currently have. It’s beautiful, a real treasure.”

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Author

Born and raised in Canada, Jenna now lives in Far North Queensland with her tribe. When the mum-of-three is not writing, you can find her floating in the pool, watching princess movies, frolicking on the beach, bouncing her baby to sleep or nagging her older kids to put on their pants.

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