These are the most popular baby names in SA, finds Stats SA

A new report released by Statistics South Africa found that almost 1 million babies were born in 2021, with more than 40% coming from two provinces: Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.

More than 60% of births were registered without parental information.

“However, this is expected to change in the coming years, as in September 2021 the Constitutional Court ruled that this section of the Births and Deaths Registration Act is unconstitutional. This means that single parents now they can have their information recorded on their child’s birth certificate from the Home Department,” Statistics SA reported.

Statistics SA found an increasing number of teenage mothers in 2021. A total of 45 257 births were to mothers aged 17 and under. About 42 babies were born to mothers between the ages of 11 and 12.

The most popular baby names for girls were Melokuhle (meaning good things), followed by Omphile and Iminathi.

For boys, the main name was Lethabo (meaning joy and happiness), followed by Lubanzi and Melokuhle. Melokuhle, Lethabo and Lethokuhle appeared in the top ten male and female baby names list.

Source: Statistics SA

“In general, popular baby names for boys and girls reflect positive hopes for the child, express beliefs and draw on positive connotations of both love and acceptance,” says Statistics SA.

Source: Statistics SA

Dlamini was the most common baby name in 2021, followed by Nkosi and Ndlovu.

Nine of the top ten surnames were from Nguni clans (isiZulu, isiXhosa, isiNdebele and siSwati). Mokoena (sixth on the list) was the most popular surname not belonging to these clans.

An estimated 949,757 births were recorded in 2021, with 21.4% from Gauteng, followed by KwaZulu-Natal (20.4%).

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