Ontlametse Phalatse, who was born with a rare age-accelerating disorder (Progeria) had the special honor of celebrating her pre-18th birthday with South African President, Jacob Zuma in his Mahlamba Ndlopfu Presidential House in Pretoria on Friday.
Progeria is a rare genetic disorder which causes premature aging. Ontlametse’s doctors predicted that she would only live until the age of 14 but thankfully, Phalatse is celebrating her 18th birthday today!
President Zuma surprised her with a basket filled with flowers and a cake.
“It is just an honor to be here, I am truly blessed. I am out of words. I was so nervous I even posted on Instagram that I don’t know what to say, but he is a lovely person and easy to communicate with,” News 24 quoted Phalatse as saying.
“She is an absolutely wonderful young lady,” Zuma said, adding that they spent time discussing “wonderful things”.
The Jacob Zuma Foundation has agreed to help meet some of Phalatse’s wishes by combining their forces with the Ontlametse Phalatse Trust.
They will also assist it providing a home and means of transportation for Phalatse.