Ellen Pakkies reliving her worst nightmare

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ellen pakkies CAPE ARGUS Ellen Pakkies, who killed her tik addict son in 2007, is now having to deal with his older brother, who is also a drug addict. File photo: Mxolisi Madela

Cape Town - The tik nightmare for Ellen Pakkies is far from over.

The Lavender Hill mother killed her abusive tik-addicted son Adam in 2007 and is now having to deal with his older sibling, who has also become a tik addict.

Pakkies strangled Adam to death, after suffering abuse at his hands for many years.

She was arrested and given a three-year suspended sentence and community service during which time she become a community worker, leading the fight against the tik scourge.

Earlier this year, she lost her eldest grandson, Otniel Tamboer, to tik and gangsterism. She said Tamboer had been using tik for many years.

He was shot in the head in April in a gang-related shooting.

On Thursday, Pakkies revealed how tik was again destroying her family.

She said her eldest son was not working and often came home – high on tik – in search of money. She said he started taking drugs when Adam, her youngest, was still alive. She knew her son was using tik and Mandrax.

“But it’s getting worse. He wants to work but he needs an ID but when I give him money for the ID he uses it to buy tik,” she said.

Pakkies has been practising tough love.

“I’m not going to give him money. Life isn’t easy for me also,” she said, adding that she often struggled to make ends meet.

She wants him to get help but says she wants to talk to him first.

Pakkies says she has had to chase her son away from her house, and that he has decided to “stay away.”

She said that it was best not having him around.

“But I don’t really see him anymore – I don’t like him in that way,” she said.


When Adam died, there were many offers to help her, but many of the offers had since disappeared, Pakkies said.

“People reaching out – the one’s who said they would help – didn’t come back,” she said.

She is grateful for the “spiritual help” she gets.

“There are a lot of mothers praying for me at other churches and I want to thank them,” she said.

“Also there are other mothers going through this and who are still living with the threat and the help they really need is not really there.”

She said she often met young people on tik who wanted help, but who did not know where to go.

“I can do what I can for those who want help,” she said.

Regarding her sons’ addiction she said: “They shouldn’t have started with it.

“I’m sure he is tired of this drug, but I can’t go out and support him all the time.

“I know it’s tough, I know it’s not easy,” she said.

“If there’s anyone who can help me, or if there are people who want to make a difference in our communities, please come forward,” she said.

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Cape Argus

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