By Charley Sutton @CharlSutton

A TEENAGE girl born without limbs lives her life in a plastic bowl

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Videographer / director: Ibrahim Ayyuba Isah
Producer: Charley Sutton, Ellie Winstanley
Editor: Joshua Douglas, Marcus Cooper

Nineteen-year-old Rahma suffers with a mystery condition that caused her limbs not to develop

Rahma Haruna is a bright, happy girl, despite suffering from a mystery condition that stopped her arms and legs developing properly - leaving her practically limbless and in constant pain.

The 19-year-old, from Kano, Nigeria, was born a healthy baby but when she turned six months old her growth came to a sudden halt and she stopped hitting key development milestones.

Her mother, Fadi, said: “From six months when she learnt how to sit that was when it began. She didn’t learn how to crawl.

The teenager has a loving family who does everything to make her life easier

“She started with a fever and that was it. Then stomach pains. Then her body parts like hands and legs. She cannot use any if the ache strikes.”

Rahma’s family do their best to provide her with a fulfilling life and transport her around the village in a plastic bowl.

Rahma said: “They help me a lot. How do they? They give me anything I need.”

Rahma's family transport her in a plastic bowl

She is particularly close to her 10-year-old brother Fahad, who dotes on his older sister.

Fahad said: “I help her in many ways. Bathing her is another thing I do. And taking her out everyday.

“I feel happy whenever I see people helping her. I like taking to our relatives. She feels happy when we visit them.”

Rahma's brother, Fahad, dotes on his older sister and transports her around their village

The cause of Rahma’s condition is unknown, despite her family working hard to secure a diagnosis.

Rahma’s father, Hussaini, said: “I’ve spent 15 years searching for the cure. I farm, go to the market and lots more looking for money to pay for her bills.

A kind citizen donated Rahma a wheelchair to get around in
Rahma's mother Fadi has worked tirelessly to get a diagnosis for her daughter

“I sold almost everything in my possession. I have spent more than one million naira (£2,600), so far. Only God knows the real amount of what I had spent.”

Doctors have been baffled by Rahma’s condition and some have even put it down to the teenager being struck down by a jinn - a supernatural being in Islam mythology.

Rahma’s family hope to get the attention of a charity or medical specialist who can help with the teen’s daily pain.

Rahma suffers daily pain due to her condition
Some doctors have claimed that Rahma has been struck down with jinns - a mythical being

Rahma recently received some generous gifts after being featured in the local press such as a donation of a wheelchair - and they have already made a big difference.

Fahad said: “We once went to a supermarket and we met someone who bought her wheels.

“He snapped our photo and it was published in the local papers. Since then we have been getting help from people.”

Rahma hopes to get the attention of a charity to help with her daily struggles
Fahad was with his sister when she was photographed by a local journalist

And despite the daily challenges Rahma faces, the brave teenager is full of hope for her future and dreams of opening her own shop.

 

Rahma said: "I thank God in everything I do"
The teenager has hopes for a bright future

She said: “I thank God in everything I do.

“I want to start a business. A grocery store and anything people buy, that is what I want.”