World’s oldest man’ celebrates his ‘123rd birthday’ in Brazil

Wednesday, February 7, 2024
 – A Brazilian pensioner who claims to be the world's oldest man has celebrated his 123rd birthday, with his family declaring he is still in good health.

Andrelino Vieira da Silva, who lives in the city of Aparecida de Goiania in the Brazilian state of Goias, was born on February 3, 1901, according to his ID card.

The pensioner, who was married and had seven children, five of whom are alive, celebrated his landmark birthday on Saturday, February 3.

One granddaughter, Janaina Lemes de Souza, told local media: 'He's fine, everything's great.

'It's a great satisfaction for him to be with us for another year like this, everyone together.'

She added that people often recognise him in the street and ask him for a selfie, saying: 'Some ask to take a photo and he does.'

Mr de Silva has not tried to verify his age with the Guinness World Records.

The official record is currently held by San Francisco-born Maria Branyas Morera, 115, who was handed the title following the death of French nun Sister André, 118, earlier this year.

Mr da Silva's granddaughter anaina Lemes de Souza told local media in February last year: 'He is still going strong'.

'This year we are not going to do anything because some other people in the family are having some problems, so we are not in the mood for the party.'

Ms de Souza said the family own three houses on the same plot of land.

She lives in one with her husband and daughter; her mother, father, and brother live in another; and her grandfather lives alone in the third.

In 2022, Ms de Souza marked the occasion during an intimate gathering with family as they all recovered from Covid-19.

He also marked his '121st' with a cake topped with a sign saying: 'O terror do INSS' (The terror of the INSS).

The message was a joke about his decades-long claim on his old age pension from the INSS, or National Institute of Social Security.

In response, the pension service sent Andrelino a special plaque saying: 'You are not the terror of the INSS. You are a blessing to the INSS.'

And they signed it off: 'We wish Mr Andrelino many more years of life.'

The body, which was set up in 1978 to replace the former National Institute of Social Insurance (INP), is also responsible for collecting contributions for the country's social security system.

Mr de Silva saw two world wars, communist revolutions and then their collapse in China and Russia, the Beatles, Princess Diana, and the assassination of JFK.

The oldest certified living person in the world is María Branyas Morera, from California, who celebrated her 115th birthday in March 2022.

Ms Branyas Morera was born on March 4, 1907, and currently resides in a nursing home in Catalonia.

She was recognised as the world's oldest living person by the Guinness World Records on January 07, 2023.

She attributed her longevity to 'an orderly life that is socially very pleasant... a good life, without excesses'. 

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