Tembisa 10 Piet Rampedi

The Tembisa 10’s Gosiame Sithole. Image: IOL/Twitter

Tembisa 10: Piet Rampedi sticks to his story and snubs PP report

Pretoria News editor, Piet Rampedi is sticking to his Tembisa 10 story despite the Acting Public Protector saying the babies never existed.

Tembisa 10 Piet Rampedi

The Tembisa 10’s Gosiame Sithole. Image: IOL/Twitter

Pretoria News editor, Piet Rampedi is standing by his ‘Tembisa 10’ story despite Acting Public Protector saying the babies never existed.

On 31 December 2022, Acting Public Protector Advocate Kholeka Gcaleka released a report which stated that the decuplets never existed as their mother Gosiame Sithole was never pregnant. 


In June 2021, Rampedi published a story that made headlines across the globe. He claimed that a South African woman, Gosiame Sithole, gave birth to a world record-breaking ten babies. A government investigation eventually found that the ‘Tembisa 10’ were never born and that Sithole was not pregnant at the time of the said birth.

Rampedi issued an apology to Independent Media and his colleagues but he maintained that his remarkable story was true.

Following the release of the Public Protector’s report, Rampedi said Gcaleka concluded her investigation without engaging the central parties or asking for any specific information from him or Independent Media. 

“The report is deficient in many material aspects of the decuplets matter which involves a complaint from Ms Moliehi Gosiame Sithole and her husband Teboho Tsotetsi,” Rampedi said. 

Furthermore, the former investigative journalist said the Public Protector’s report looks like there was a sinister attempt to undermine the Donen Report. 

“I still stand by the decuplets story, and believe that in time I will be vindicated. The Acting Public Protector’s report looks like nothing but a blunt tool used to legitimise the government’s previous denials and desperate cover-ups,” he added. 


In November 2021, Independent Media released the first episode of the eight part series and the media group maintained that there is a high level scandal unfolding, with allegations that the Gauteng Department of Health, as well as doctors and social workers, are complicit in the trafficking of children such as the Tembisa 10. 

In October 2021, Independent Media Chairperson, Dr Iqbal Surve held a press conference in which he outlined these allegations as part of the findings of his team’s investigation into the matter. 

Tembisa 10 Piet Rampedi
Dr Mpho Pooe giving a briefing alongside Independent Media’s Dr Iqbal Surve on the Tembisa 10 Image source: Youtube screen grab

“There has been an exponential rise in the number of human trafficking cases globally. South Africa is no exception. Women and children are falling prey to unscrupulous syndicates dealing in slavery who supply the voracious appetite of sickening monsters. We simply cannot allow this to happen,” he said. 

“Our forthcoming docuseries aims to not only validate the birth of the decuplets, but importantly, to support the heroic efforts of those involved in combatting trafficking and to make citizens more alert to the possibilities of what is happening around them. What our team discovered in the making of this series is deeply disturbing,” he added.