There’s a sick new trend among druggies on the Cape Flats.
Addicts are stealing contraceptive implants out of women’s arms to feed their habits.
The implant is a tiny plastic rod which is inserted under the skin of the upper arm to prevent pregnancy.
It releases a small amount of hormone known as progestogen into the body which stops ovulation.
A drug counsellor affiliated to the Department of Social Development says in the past year, women have been knifed and robbed of their implants, and targeted outside clinics.
Shea Damonze, a former addict who is now a drug counsellor with Bounce Back, a partner of the DSD, says they made the shocking discovery this week during a four-day substance abuse and gender violence workshop at the Solomon Tsuku hall in Site C, Khayelitsha.
“Everyone knows about the deadly drugs tik and heroin. But each time we have these workshops, we are hearing of new methods and new cocktails that addicts are making,” he explains.
“Drug addicts are moving from using flat screen televisions to using these implanted contraceptives.”
Earlier this year, Shea explained to the Daily Voice how drug addicts are mixing a powder-like substance inside flat screen TVs and antiretroviral medication with drugs to create a potent cocktail.
“Women started speaking out at this workshop on the first day and told stories where women are being robbed and targeted for these implants,” he adds.
“We do not know what is inside these implants and how they are being used.
“These drug addicts would stop women even outside a clinic and check their arms to see if they have the implant and then cut it out of them.”
A woman, 31, who attended the workshop, said her cousin was a victim last December.
“It was during the festive season and they wanted to rob my cousin of her cellphone but when they saw she had the implant in her arm, they cut it out of and left the cellphone,” she says.
“My cousin did not report it to the police.”
The Department of Health and police did not respond to Daily Voice queries.