By Shandu Ka Ndaba
Dear Dr Aaron Motsoaledi
Why are you still pushing poison implemented during apartheid to deal with the ‘black peril’ better known as ‘swart gevaar’ through population control and eugenics? Why are you still giving young, black women injectable contraceptives when studies in 2011 already confirmed these injectable contraceptives make HIV-1 acquisition and transmission certain if you use them?
In a paper published in the South African Journal of Studies on 3 April 1987 Barbara B. Brown said ‘South Africa had to face the Black Peril’. https://www.jstor.org/stable/2636860?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents
In the paper she contends that the apartheid government had a policy that sought to limit women’s fertility, change human mortality and control immigration in an effort to limit the black population while maintaining a large white population. The apartheid government had intensified its efforts to limit black women’s fertility by placing ‘family planning’ at the centre of the political economy when in 1987 apartheid South Africa was forced to resign from the International Federation of planned Parenthood due to its widespread and racialised distribution of Depo Provera. https://perceptionsofpregnancy.com/2016/11/28/fighting-fertility-depo-provera-south-africa-and-the-british-anti-apartheid-movement/#more-28896This at a time when the HIV-AIDS pandemic was on the increase in South Africa.
Black women’s fertility has always been a highly political issue. Our wombs and ability to have children go hand in hand with the racists prurient interest in the black female body and it’s hyper sexualization. The way injectable contraceptives were developed, tested and then distributed was racialised. In other words experimentation was done only on black women and men. https://nyupress.org/webchapters/Green_William_intro.pdf .
At the centre of Apartheid Governments political economy policy was the denial of family to black people through migrant labour, influx control and the introduction of intra uterine devices and injectable contraceptives in the 1960’s often through coercion and without consent. In fact injectable contraceptives have been plagued by accusations of eugenics from the 1960s both in South Africa and abroad. Eugenics is the study of social control that may improve or impair the racial qualities of future generations either physically or mentally. Early research in 1960s at the Grady Clinic in Atlanta violated FDA informed-consent regulations, and many of the 14,000 predominantly low-income, black and rural women given the drug were not aware it was experimental. The controversy continued when the drug was clinically tested in Rhodesia in the 1970’s and once approved given forcibly to black women who worked on white owned commercial farms as a form of population control. Zimbabwe banned Depo-Provera in 1981. https://www.jstor.org/stable/2637531?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents
In May 2017, Pfizer, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF) announced a multi-year extension of their collaboration to to further broaden access to Pfizer’s all-in-one and-the-childrens-investment-fund-foundation-reduce-the-price-of-the-injectable-contraceptive/ Yet these same injectable contraceptives have been proven to increase a woman’s risk of acquiring HIV-1 by 49% and can potentially cause irreversible bone loss, aggressive breast cancer, stroke, blood clots in lungs limbs and eyes. The ‘less serious’ side effects are weight gain, hair loss, ovarian cysts, suicidal ideation, depression, loss of libido, loss of menstruation and mood swings http://www.imjournal.com/depo/IMCJ_12_1_p27_34Spevack.pdf
The deadliest side effects of injectable contraceptives is that it makes women who are already biologically more susceptible to acquiring HIV-1 even more likely to not only acquire HIV-1 but transmit to their partners. In South Africa 15 -24 year old women account for more than half of all the new HIV-1 infections. These are the very young women who are targeted to receive these contraceptives. A study in Lancet Infectious Diseases in 2011 found that hormone injections nearly doubled the chance that a woman would pass HIV-1 to her partner, or contract it from an infected partner. http://www.thelancet.com/journals/laninf/article/PIIS1473-3099(14)71052-7/abstrac The risk is NOT the same if a woman is on a combined hormonal contraceptive pill or not on contraception at all. There is a very strong correlation between the administration of injectable contraceptives and the HIV/AIDS pandemic devastating South Africa. South Africa is also one of the countries with the world’s highest usage of injectable contraceptives. The Niger by contrast only recently introduced injectable contraceptives and they have the lowest prevalence of HIV-1 on the continent. Coincidence?
Let me be clear: Our Health departments active promotion of injectable contraceptive when we already have a high HIV incidence rate is not only contributing to the HIV pandemic, it is fueling it and potentially accelerating it.
Black women’s wombs continue to be a site of a global political battle and an eugenics agenda. The Clinton Health Access Initiative, the Gates Foundation and a host of other foreign-aid agencies, including USAID, distribute millions of doses of birth-control injections to women Africa each year. Termed “fit and forget” contraceptive injections preferred because they are given to women every three months and are not dependent on the user using them correctly. Donors prefer long acting contraceptives on the premise that reducing population growth has always been integral according to them to improving people’s health and giving them a chance to lift themselves out of poverty. The subtext is that black women are too irresponsible to be left in charge of controlling their own fertility and reproductive labour. The market for injectable contraceptives is black, poor, and vulnerable women and girls who are targeted and injected without full informed consent of the risks and side effects.
Reproductive rights activists have been raising the alarm on injectable-contraceptives since the early 1990’s. The United States government warns its own citizens against the use injectable contraceptive. In the United States these contraceptives are not banned but they are ‘black boxed’; warning American women not to use them. Yet the same government then turns around and orders massive amounts of the drug and sends them to the very countries gripped by an HIV pandemic.
The United States through its President’s Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (Pepfar) has an executive order banning international NGOs from providing abortion services or offering information about abortions if they receive US funding. Yet they work with NGOs that push injectable contraceptives onto Africa knowing they have both contraceptive and abortifacient effects.
Of course it would be irresponsible to talk about injectable contraceptives and not talk about the market they create for antiretroviral drugs and cancer fighting drugs whilst keeping African population size ‘acceptable’. I don’t do this in a vacuum In particular the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have stated that part of their aim is population control for ‘anthropogenic climate change’ reasons. You can watch the YouTube video of Bill Gates equation on climate change https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4vzFeiKH1jQ&app=desktop
As Africans hearing this we have to at least consider the nexus of a reduced population in Africa being part of a climate-resilience strategy for the West and a means of reducing atmospheric carbon. We then have to ask ourselves could climate control be the latest guise for eugenics, ethnocide or genocide?
So what does injectable Contraceptive and Antiretroviral market look like?
From 1994-2000, USAID provided 41,967,200 units of Depo-Provera, primarily into African countries, at a cost of more than $40 million.
According to The United National Population Fund (UNFPA) External Procurement Support Reports, 2010–2013, USAID spent $116,901,577 on injectable contraceptives in that time frame. USAID-funded UNFPA spent an additional $108,354,606, and the International Planned Parenthood Federation spent $4,579,112 on the drugs.
The Global HIV Drug Market was valued at $20,448 million in 2015 and is expected to garner $26,458 million by 2022, registering a compound annual growth rate of 3.7% during the forecast period 2016 – 2022. Keep in mind that the 70% of the global burden for HIV is in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Women and men have reproductive rights which encompass the right to legal and safe abortion; the right to birth control; freedom from coerced sterilization and contraception; the right to access good-quality reproductive healthcare; and the right to education and access in order to make free and informed choices. For centuries Africans have been subjected to eugenics where our reproductive rights were ripped from us.
The fulfillment of apartheids population control policy is upon us. The aim was to limit or decimate woman’s fertility through injectable contraceptive that effectively guarantees that she acquire HIV-1 during her most fertile years, have fewer offspring who are unlikely to reproduce which then changes the birth and mortality rate of blacks.
I call on South Africa’s cabinet to summarily ban this poison & recall all units already dispensed.