Young brave ighter TAKES A BOW

De­spite los­ing the bat­tle against her dis­or­der at 18, Ont­lametse Pha­latse never al­lowed the con­di­tion to stand in the way of ful­fill­ing her dreams

Move! - - INSPIRATION - By Vin­cent Phahlane

ONT­LAMETSE Pha­latse re­cently passed away at the age of 18 due to proge­ria – a rare ge­netic dis­or­der which causes ac­cel­er­ated ag­ing. In her short-lived life, she man­aged to be one of the bravest peo­ple who beat the odds.


Ont­lametse first made head­lines when she ap­peared on’s in­ves­tiga­tive show, 3rd De­gree.

No one ac­tu­ally knows how many chil­dren in the world have proge­ria. In 2009, Ont­lametse was the first black child to be di­ag­nosed with the dis­or­der in the world and was one of the only two girls with proge­ria in South Africa.

But she never al­lowed her sit­u­a­tion to stand in her way of ful­fill­ing her dreams. She was a re­mark­able wo­man who was de­ter­mined to achieve a lot in her short life.

Ont­lametse, who called her­self the first lady, wanted to live her dream. She once said that God put her on this world for a pur­pose, and she has now learnt to ac­cept her con­di­tion.


Doc­tors told her that she would only live up to the age of 13, but she lived up to 18. For her fi­nal birthday, she re­ceived a gift she had al­ways wanted.

A day be­fore she turned 18, she met Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma at the Union Build­ings in Pre­to­ria, and re­ceived a bou­quet of flow­ers from him.

Af­ter hear­ing of her death, Pres­i­dent Zuma also sent his con­do­lences to Ont­lametse’s fam­ily, calling her the spe­cial child of South Africa. “Our lives were touched when we met Ont­lametse last month. She was very spe­cial in­deed.”


Ont­lametse’s death caught ev­ery­one’s at­ten­tion, with some celebri­ties pay­ing tribute to her.

Those who paid tribute in­clude so­cialite Somizi

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