By Staff Writers

The 80-year old Prime Minister Thomas Thabane told journalists in Maseru today that he can still conceive babies despite his old age.

“I am talking here as a man who reached 70 without falling sick. Even now I can still have babies,” Thabane said.

For men who are reluctant to start a family, it is an age-old defence: there is no need to rush into fatherhood, because they believe to them age is just a number and has nothing to do with their  fertility as proven by former president of South Africa Jacob Zuma who continued fathering children well after he qualified for a bus pass.

But a study in 2017 revealed that a couple’s chances of having a baby fall with the man’s age, to the point that it can have a substantial impact on their ability to start a family.

Laura Dodge, who led the research at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School in Boston, said that couples should bear the findings in mind when planning a family.

Scientists have long known that a woman’s chances of conceiving naturally drop sharply from the age of 35, but fertility research has focused so much on women that male factors are less well understood. “The impact of age seems to focus almost exclusively on the female partner’s biological clock,” Dodge said in 2017.

To investigate the impact of a man’s age on a couple’s chances of having a baby, Dodge and her colleagues studied records of nearly 19,000 IVF treatment cycles in the Boston area between 2000 and 2014.

Thabane boasted about his fertility when addressing a press conference at LTV studios.

He had called the press conference as the head of government to present government’s programme of action and a plan to address the nation’s needs for the months and years ahead.

His term as Prime Minister expires in 2022.

By being aware of what government is doing, he said, everyone can become involved and also take part in government’s plans to build a better life for all.

Thabane also took the opportunity to talk against the rapidly spreading phenomenon of “blessers”.

“You sugar-daddies, you destroy our young girls’ future. Leave our young girls alone and go date your age-mates,” he said.

The irony here is that Thabane is 80, about 37 years older than his wife.

The age-old sugar-daddy phenomena has been repackaged and sold as a brand new concept, called ‘Blesser’ which is spreading on social media like wildfire.

Rich older men make known their willingness to ‘bless’ a woman with luxury items in return for sexual favours.

According to the latest trend, rich older men, make known their willingness to ‘bless’ a woman of his preference with luxury items such as clothes, exotic trips and cars, in return for sexual favours.

Blessings are normally associated with Godly favour, but the term is now being used by unemployed woman sharing photos of their lavish lifestyles and items they have been ‘blessed’ with on Instagram and Facebook.

Some people regard this as thinly veiled prostitution and extremely dangerous for participants.

Blesser’ phenomena holds many dangers.

HIV prevalence among adolescent girls is five times the rate of teen boys, and around 10 percent of women are already infected with HIV by the age of 24.

Researchers have found that many HIV infections in women aged 15 to 24 were driven by older men, many of whom do not want to use condoms.

Many of these relationships are with “sugar daddies” or “blessers” who give impoverished young women gifts and money.

They have concluded that HIV positive teens were infected by men on average 11 years older than they were while women under 25 were infected by men eight years older than they were. NW

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