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South Africa: Doctor Invents Female Condom with 'Teeth'‎ ( Watch pics and Video )

Few dare confront it, yet the violating act of rape is still very much an aspect of every society. But for one South African doctor, something needed to be done -- and fast -- to stem the menace after her encounter with a rape victim.

She invented female condoms with "teeth". Four decades ago when Dr Sonnet Ehlers was reportedly on call at night, a devastated rape victim was brought in.

Forty years down the line, she came up with a unique solution, worn by women like tampons -- the Rape-aXe. The device can only be surgically removed once it has lodged itself on the male genital, which will result in positive identification of the attacker and subsequent arrest.

Dr Sonnet went a step further and consulted "engineers, gynaecologists and psychologists" to help make the design safe and not subject victims to HIV or other sexually transmitted diseases. The anti-rape condom is now undergoing a trial period in South Africa, where it is distributed free to women, especially during the Fifa World Cup. Once the trial is over, it will be available on the market for $2.20 (Sh170).

A new anti-rape condom with teeth for women has been invented by Doctor Sonnet Ehlers:

Ehlers is distributing the female condoms in the various South African cities where the World Cup soccer games are taking place. The woman inserts the latex condom like a tampon. Jagged rows of teeth-like hooks line its inside and attach on a man's penis during penetration, Ehlers said. Once it lodges, only a doctor can remove it -- a procedure Ehlers hopes will be done with authorities on standby to make an arrest. "It hurts, he cannot pee and walk when it's on," she said. "If he tries to remove it, it will clasp even tighter... however, it doesn't break the skin, and there's no danger of fluid exposure."

Some people see Dr Sonnet's innovation as welcome, since women have always taken drastic steps to ward off rape. However, critics are accusing Dr Sonnet of developing a medieval weapon in fighting rape. They are asserting that the device will only incite more violence against women since a man subjected to great pain might easily kill the woman wearing it, adding that the act of wearing the condom in anticipation of being assaulted represents enslavement that no woman should be subjected to.

Ms Rosemary Okello, the director of African Woman and Child Feature Service (AWC), a non-governmental organisation based in Nairobi, seems to agree. Speaking to the Nation Media Group's online publication, Africa Review, Ms Okello says "medical invention cannot be used to tackle a social problem", since this will not address say, sexual harassment. Then there are all those babies who are subjected to rape, but are still too young to wear the condom.

Ms Okello added that although the device had been developed in good faith, it was still gender and age biased. "What about men who are also victims of rape, and how many women will have access to it?" she asked. Like other lobbyists, she is instead rooting for more preventative and educational measures for both men and women, aimed at stopping sexual assault in the first place. At the World Cup, the world is watching to see if rapists will be deterred.

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Comment by Debbie Diamond on September 16, 2010 at 9:29am
I hope the venarable women in our society especially theyoung women, girls in the thrid world countries are able to get access to these comdoms. othewise I feel that this would defeat the whole issue. Also I would just like to add the fact that I live in a mothering country, How come I just know bout this, so realistally what chance does a young girl /lady have acessing these teethed ribbed comdoms
Comment by slim41 on September 14, 2010 at 3:42pm
Good for you, its about time, Cause NO means No!!
Comment by Valerie Hay on August 21, 2010 at 10:45am
Well done Ms Okello a lot of woman are raped in South Africa, especially young girls and nothing is done about it. Raping anyone is an offence and these men should not get away with it. It's a shame teenagers can't buy it. I saw a documentary about the rapes in South Africa and some of them were actually very young girls. As for men being raped maybe someone will come up with an invention for them too or young men could buy the device so when the perpetrator puts it on they too will be identified when they can't take it off.
Comment by Marcia Grizzle on August 8, 2010 at 7:59pm
Lol this is funny but i like it
Comment by on July 11, 2010 at 11:26am
Ok sweetheart, just thought I'd let you know I am here for you when you need that knight in shining armor with that sword of steel. Have a great day. lol!
Comment by Hummingbird on July 11, 2010 at 10:31am
@ hahahahh no babes! I live in a very safe country/place thank God for that. It might be useful to wear them in dangerous countries well know for rapes if i ever do go for certain reason. But thanks for the offer hahahahha!!!
Comment by on July 11, 2010 at 9:50am
Wow ArabianGirl, you've got me concerned. Do you sleep in dangerous, unsafe places sweetheart?
I think you should just let me be your bodyguard while you sleep peacefully instead.
Consider it sweetheart, I'm available for you.
Comment by Hummingbird on July 11, 2010 at 9:16am
LOL!! It's kinda a funny but in a good way. Like funny happy, women protection. Got to get me one of these to wear at night when sleeping. i'm posting this to all my female friends.
Comment by M<dot>Hersh on July 6, 2010 at 1:16am
yeah this is cool and all but what about the evil vindictive woman who just want 2 get back 2 their man or just being evil
Comment by Karen D. Olanlege on July 3, 2010 at 5:17pm
It should shred it...and take ages to heal.

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