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It was a miracle when a virgin bore a baby and later gave birth to Jesus, on what is commemorated by Christians as Christmas day.

Today, there is technology that allows a woman to bear a child without having sexual intercourse. And that technology is here in Uganda. Last October, Claire gave birth to a baby she had to immediately hand over to its biological parents. They could not have a baby so they rented her womb for sh6m - a considerable amount for a single mother who runs a telecom shop in the city.

“I have two children of my own,” says Claire, who withheld her second name. “That couple had none, yet they have been together for ten years.”

The childless couple lives in Buziga in Kampala. Claire was their close friend since childhood. When they learnt of the rent-a-womb phenomenon, they asked her to carry the child for them. Three Ugandan women have given birth by this method in the last two years, according to Dr. Tamale Ssali, a gynaecologist and director of the Bukoto based Women’s...