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A drug den has been uncovered in the outskirts of Polokwane in Limpopo, where children as young as 11 were said to be hooked on drugs.

The drug racket had been operating from an abandoned municipal building, where criminals also lured underage girls to be trafficked.

On Friday, Seshego Community Against Gangsterism and Crime (Scagac) and Seshego Taxi Association raided the drug den, where they found about 40 young boys and girls believed to have been nyaope addicts.

A 14-year-old girl and her 16-year-old brother, who had run away from their home in the Flora Park suburb, were among those discovered.

Their mother, whose name cannot be revealed to protect the identity of the children, said her kids had frequently run away from home but would often return after two weeks. 

“My children have a tendency of disappearing from home and later returning home dirty and smelly,” she said. “They have already dropped out of school.

“I once called a social worker to talk some sense into their heads but nothing good came out of it. Now that I know that they are drug addicts, my stress level has gone up.”

Scagac chairperson Vincent Kunutu said that they were shocked when they discovered the children.

“After receiving a tipoff about this drug den, we decided to go there,” Kunutu said.

“Upon arrival, we found young children who were clearly high on drugs. 

“Those kids need urgent attention from social workers and spiritual healers.”

Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo, spokesperson for the Limpopo police, said they have arrested two men for dealing with illegal substances. The suspects will appear in the Polokwane magistrates’ court on Tuesday October 5.

“We are requesting for members of the public to assist us in nailing drug kingpins,” Mojapelo said.

Witness Tiva, spokesperson for the provincial Department of Social Development, welcomed the drug den raid.

“Our social workers will be roped in to make sure that they start with assessments and subsequently activate either outpatient or inpatient treatment programs for these children.”

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