Human sacrifices, myth or reality? – A viewpoint

On November 22, Blessing Mandabva, from Zimbabwe, shared with us his view on the history of human sacrifices as well as present-day practices of this age-old ritual. His contribution was published in The Standard, a Zimbabwean Sunday newspaper. Recently, I posted other articles with African voices protesting against this phenomenon of ritualistic murders, commonly called muti murders in Southern Africa. See the Op-Ed article in the online Namibian newspaper New Era Live, entitled: ‘Ritual killings: Cry my beloved humankind’, posted on October 27, 2020 and  an older article, dating from 2011, ‘Africa: Breaking the silence in ritual killings‘, written by Fanuel Hadzizi, also from Zimbabwe and posted on November 14, 2020.

The recent turmoil in Zimbabwe, following the death of a 7-year old boy, Tawire Makore, who was murdered for muti purposes, clearly shows that the gruesome practice of human sacrifices has not disappeared. See my October 26 posting on this ritual murder that shocked Zimbabwe.  

As Blessing Mandabva describes, more people have raised their voices against muti murders including Zimbabwe National Traditional Healers Association (Zinatha) president George Kandiero who distanced his association and all members from all acts of ritual killings. George Kandieo, who also mentioned the ritual murder of Tawire Makore, confirmed what I have stated repeatedly on these pages: “These ritual killings are just a tip of the iceberg (…)“.

Also the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) has denounced ritually-motivated killings and issued the following statement: “The ZHRC has noted with concern the alarming rise and high frequency of ritually-motivated killings in Zimbabwe, specifically targeted at children and young people.

What else can I add?? Read the following contribution and join the struggle against ritualistic murders and other acts based on superstition and motivated by the greed for power and/or wealth.

Warning: the following article contains graphic details of ritual murders (webmaster FVDK).

Human sacrifices, myth or reallity?

Published: November 22, 2020
By: The Standard, Zimbabwe –  Blessing Mandabva

Since time immemorial, human beings the world over have pursued answers to the puzzling questions of their origins, sickness, death and after death, poverty, power, the meaning of natural phenomena such as earthquakes, diseases and accidents, among others. They have also inquired on how to protect themselves from such mysterious events. Invention of personified deities, gods and the occult sciences, witchcraft, divination and soothsaying in order to seek the protection of supernatural powers has been the order of the day. Individuals used them for protection from their enemies, to dominate others in societies be it in business, politics, churches and other religious circles to gain power and to accumulate wealth. Human sacrifice has been a phenomenon which has been passed from generation to generation albeit it appearing in various forms.

Human sacrifice is defined as the ritualised, devotedly motivated killing of human beings. It is a fundamental which is not endorsed by any state, but was once practiced by societies across the globe in the past. In this landlocked country of Zimbabwe, there is a misconception on many deaths of humans, children, women and albinos being attributed to human sacrificial rituals which are said to bring quick wealth and fortunes. Human sacrifice, especially of children, occurs frequently despite the government’s efforts to stop it. Times are tough in Zimbabwe, and people are looking for sacrifices to improve their fortunes. Hunger and starvation coupled with the purported economic meltdown which has been attributed to the economic sanctions by the ruling elite whilst those in the opposition blame the ruling elite for poor governance.

Zimbabwe National Traditional Healers Association (Zinatha) president George Kandiero distanced his association and all members from all heinous acts of ritual killings. 

He, however, said those ritual killings are mainly done by witches and witchdoctors. According to Kandiero, Zinatha has some specialists who could have been involved in the case of Tapiwa Makore to give guidance in finding a lasting solution. 

“It’s rather unfortunate Tapiwa is no more, but we believe the full wrath of the law will take its course. The perpetrators must be brought to book even if they are members of our associations,” said Kandiero.

”These ritual killings are just a tip of the iceberg since a lot of sacrifices in various forms are happening in the underworld. 

“Those who do such are everywhere including churches, homes and workplaces and this has to be addressed for people to live in harmony.”

Reverend John Makaniko, a United Methodist Church in Zimbabwe pastor, said: “Human sacrifice is a reality though in this contemporary world it’s now rare.

“The law has abolished human sacrifice and it’s now treated as murder.” According to him, in Christianity, only Jesus Christ was sacrificed for sins of all humanity. He becomes a sacrifice once and for all [Hebrew 10:10]. 

“Jesus Christ becomes a sacrificial lamb for salvation of all humanity. The human sacrifice done by individuals is for selfish reasons like riches and fame.
“This human sacrifice that is shedding blood of other people for selfish ends is evil, sinful and a serious crime.”

“As Christians, we are guided by the scripture’s teachings and commandments like: ‘Thou shalt not kill’ (Exodus 20:13) and our social principles say, ‘life is a sacred gift’; therefore, every human life should be treated with dignity and shouldn’t be sacrificed. 

“In short, human sacrifice is a devilish act that has no place in Christianity and progressive society.” 

Rev Makaniko added: “In contemporary society, faith in God and appreciating the dignity of hard work will result in success and prosperity.

“The core values of the United Methodist Church clearly state that, ‘we do good, do no harm and stay in love with God’; thus human sacrifice isn’t good because it brings harm to other people and breaks relationships with God.”

According to some South African media reports, body parts can be sold for as little as
R3 000 in that country. 

I recall vividly growing up in a township when public transport in the form of the commuter omnibuses had just been introduced. At that age, we were scared to death by the stories doing the rounds in the township of the disappearance of children. We were told how kids were being lured by strangers who promised them sweets. 

The next thing, their bodies would be found in the bushes with body parts missing. Rumours were that businesspeople were taking the children’s heads to Durban and were trading them off for taxis, kombis and grinding mills. Another unfortunate case is that of Given Flint Matapure who disappeared at Harare Exhibition Park in August 2011. The case took ages to be finalised.

Ritual killings, or human sacrifices, are committed for the purpose of taking human body parts which are said to be used to prepare charms and other traditional medicines for spiritual fortification. In some instances, ritualists and occults target vulnerable members of society such as the poor, women, children and albinos whose families often do not have the resources to demand justice. 

In some African countries there is a belief that female body parts possess supernatural powers that bring good fortune or make criminals invisible to police and other authorities. Children and young people are mostly preferred since they will be having a whole lot of life to live than the elderly. 

All the success which could have happened to them will now be transferred to the ritualist as the children continue to live in the underworld. It is time governments turned up the heat on culprits and put an end to this violation of human rights. 

Heavy sentences should be given to those who commission and carry out the ritual killings.

The Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC) denounced ritually-motivated killings.

“The ZHRC has noted with concern the alarming rise and high frequency of ritually-motivated killings in Zimbabwe, specifically targeted at children and young people,” the ZHRC statement read. 

“The heinous murder and mutilation of innocent people is disheartening and should be denounced in the strongest terms by our society and nation as a whole.”

ZHRC also stated that participation in ritual killings violates Sections 48 (1), the universal human right to life, of the Constitution and other sections of international agreements on rights to human life, such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948), and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. 

The rights body called for a collective effort among authorities to end the ritual killings and urged police to undergo further training to adequately deal with issues of human rights violations.

In July 2015, a four-year old pupil from St Lucy Primary School in the Kombo area of Insiza district in Matabeleland South province was found dead with her lips, liver and other body parts missing in a suspected case of ritual murder. Her body was found mutilated in a pond. The incident struck fear into villagers who indicated that they suspected the child was killed for ritual purposes. They started escorting their children to and from school. 

Legislator Pupurai Togarepi has moved a motion on the proliferation of chilling incidents of murder indicating that victims of such heinous crimes are the vulnerable and unsuspecting members of society, mostly women and children. 

In another bizarre suspected ritual killing in June 2020, a 25-year-old woman, Thabelo Mazolo, had her body mutilated and stashed into a drum filled with acid in Bulawayo. Part of the body, from the waist going down, was missing while breasts and palms appeared to have been sliced off. The ritualist murder had message from a sangoma with instructions to perform on the body, it reads “you must cut yourself and spill your blood onto a mirror. Gaze into the mirror and say out loud that you are selling your soul for riches.” 

The practice of ritual killing and human sacrifice continues to take place in several African countries in contravention of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights and other human rights instruments. In this 21st century, human beings are still being hunted down, mutilated, murdered or sacrificed for ritual purposes across the region. 

Several cases of kidnapping and disappearance of persons are traced to the vicious schemes and activities of ritualists. Ritualists hunt for blood and harvest human body parts to prepare charms and magical concoctions. In some cases desperate ritualists invade cemeteries and exhume dead bodies to extract body parts, said one anonymous source.

Many cases of ritual sacrifice take place in secret locations. They are largely unreported, not investigated and go unpunished. The perpetrators and their collaborators capitalise on the prevalent irrational fear of the supernatural among Africans, and the poor and corrupt policing and justice system, to get away with these egregious violations. 

Victims of ritual sacrifice are mostly minors nd vulnerable individuals who do not live to seek justice or redress or who lack the resources to seek redress if ever they survive the ordeal. 

Human sacrifice is real, it is neither fallacious, frivolous nor fiction. It is a cancer which needs urgent attention and collective efforts by all stakeholders from grassroots level before it is normalised by satanic and evil forces in our societies.

Source: Human sacrifices, myth or reality?

South Africa: Acornhoek community marches against alleged ritual killings (2017 article)

The northeastern provinces of South Africa have a bad reputation when it comes to ritualistic activities and murders. Whereas commendable steps have been taken by local authorities to arrest and put on trial those suspected of involvement in these heinous crimes (see my previous postings), still much is left to be desired. This is illustrated by the article reproduced below, dating from 2017, focusing the citizens of Acornhoek in Mpumalanga province. The danger exists that citizens will take the law into their own hand if the authorities fail to react properly. In a country, ruled by the principles of the rule of law, mob justice has no place. Mob justice, however, is an important signal that the legal authorities fall short of the expectations which people justly hold (webmaster FVDK).

Acornhoek community marches against alleged ritual killings

COMMUNITY MEMORANDUM HANDOVER: A memorandum regarding the crime in the communities was submitted to Acornhoek Police Station Commander Colonel Ntwane.

Published: July 11, 2017
By: Letaba Herald –  Refiloe Matome

The community of Acornhoek (consisting of Cottondale, Timbavati, RDP and Plaza View) presented a memorandum to the Acornhoek SAPS regarding crime which is happening within their communities on June 28.

The memorandum presented to the station management in order for them to address the cases of ritual practices and child trafficking that is allegedly taking place within the community.

“As the citizens of this country, we no longer feel safe within our communities and the constitution clearly stated that we all have the right to live freely,” said Ndlovu of The Bushbuckridge Residents Association.

Three incidents were clearly highlighted where they believe victims were unfairly treated and justice was not served. The first being Wilson Mokoena’s case who was killed in Plaza View earlier this year and according to information provided to the Hoedspruit Herald, the suspect is a government official and is well known but no arrests have been made thus far.

“Alfred Madalane was found killed and dumped at an Acornhoek scrap yard with body parts missing, three suspects were arrested after confessing to his killing, but they were later released by the court stating that there was not enough evidence while the perpetrators confessed to his death,” added Ndlovu.

The last case that was presented to the SAPS for query was that of Maluleke who was killed and dumped at Pendulane cross with his blood allegedly drained from his body.

“The above mentioned cases need to be considered, we call upon the station commander to urgently intervene in these cases and all suspects need to be rearrested immediately. We expect to get a respond with immediate effect before the community takes the law into their own hands,” concluded Ndlovu.

Source: Acornhoek community marches against alleged ritual killings

Africa: Breaking the silence in ritual killings (2011 article)

Browsing on internet I found this 2011 article written by Fanuel Hadzizi from Zimbabwe. The article could have been written in the year 2000, or much earlier, and even nowadays, in the year 2020 !

I find it encouraging reading this article on a topic which it too often swept under the carpet although its main message is a sad one. The author pleads to break the silence on ritual killings in Africa and points to several cases of ritual killings in Southern Africa to warrant his plea. He concludes “It is time governments turn up the heat on culprits and put an end to this violation of human rights.”

What else can I say? Highly recommended – read ‘AFRICA: BREAKING THE SILENCE IN RITUAL KILLINGS’ by Fanuel Hadzizi, Gender Links Justice Program Officer of PeaceWomen. Peacewomen is the Women, Peace and Security Program of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF), the oldest women’s peace organization in the world. 

Warning: The following article contains graphic details of ritual murders (FVDK)

Africa: Breaking the silence in ritual killings

Published: September 26, 2011
By: Peace WomenFanuel Hadzizi

Ritual killings and human sacrifice happen in many, if not all countries in Africa. Cases have been reported in such countries as Botswana, Lesotho, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

In Zambia, there have been cases whereby people’s heads were found in Asian owned shops whilst in Swaziland, some politicians commissioned ritual killings so that they could win elections. The grossness of the ritual murders is quite scary to imagine as victims’ bodies are mutilated and certain body parts go missing. Needless to mention that in South Africa for instance, body parts can be sold for as little as R3000.

On 24 September, South Africa celebrated Heritage Day under the banner “celebrating the Heroes and Heroines of the Liberation Struggle in South Africa.” According to the Department of Arts and Culture, the theme allowed the nation to “celebrate the lasting legacy of the national liberation struggle.”

Most importantly, Heritage Day provides an opportunity for South Africans to celebrate their cultural heritage and diversity of beliefs and traditions. As a concerned resident, I also feel that this is an opportunity for us to break the silence around the negative cultural practice of ritual killings that is prevalent in society and yet violates the basic universal human right to life.

During the course of Women’s Month in August, South Africa became the ninth Southern African Development Community (SADC) country to ratify the Protocol on Gender and Development. This brought to two thirds the number of countries that have done so, and means that the Protocol is now in force.

As we also celebrate the coming into force of this crucial instrument, let us ponder what is meant by the provision that all states adopt laws and policies to protect the girl and boy child from “harmful cultural attitudes and practices in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child.”

I recall vividly growing up in one township in Zimbabwe. This was just when public transport in the form of the Toyota Hiace taxi had just been introduced in the country. At that tender age, we were scared to death by the stories doing the rounds in the township of the disappearance of children. We were told how kids were being lured by strangers who promised them some sweets.

The next thing, their bodies would be found in the bushes with some body parts missing. Rumours were that business people were taking the children’s heads for instance to Durban in South Africa and were trading them off for the taxis. Weren’t we all scared!

Ritual killings or muti killings are committed for the purpose of taking human body parts which are used to prepare charms and other traditional medicines. These charms are believed to have supernatural powers which are greatly enhanced if the organs are removed whilst the victim is still alive.

In Southern Africa there is a belief that female body parts possess supernatural powers that bring good fortune or make criminals invisible to police and other authorities. Research has shown that in other countries, especially in East Africa, the breast and a woman’s private parts enhance business success, a man’s private parts are believed to increase virility whilst a tongue can smooth one’s path to a lover’s heart.

In fact, ritual killing is perceived as an act of spiritual fortification.

In an article titled New Magic for New Times: Muti Murder in Democratic South Africa, Louise Vincent (2008) says that “the use of human body parts for medicinal purposes is based in the belief that it is possible to appropriate the life force of one person through its literal consumption by another.” The victim is thus carefully chosen.

The Sowetan reported in July this year that the brother of Gladys Mogaramedi (61) killed her for her body parts. Police discovered the badly mutilated body without the private parts. I felt a very cold chill down my spine as I read through the story with shock and disbelief. Even after reading it twice I still found myself at a loss for words, trying to comprehend how a person could execute such a diabolic act moreover to a sibling without any conscience.

The South African case highlighted above is but the tip of the iceberg to some of the cultural problems that our society is still grappling with in relation to gender based violence. More often than not, these crimes evade the spotlight because they are largely unreported or recorded merely as murder. Ritualists target vulnerable members of society such as the poor, women, children, people with disabilities and albinos whose families often do not have the resources to demand justice.

It is time governments turn up the heat on culprits and put an end to this violation of human rights. Heavy sentences should be given to those who commission as well as carry out the ritual killings. It is heartening to note that in a July 2010 ruling, the High Court of Mwanza region sentenced 50 year old Kazimiri Mashauri to death. The Tanzanian court convicted him for hacking to death a 5 year old girl for muti-related purposes.

Fanuel Hadzizi is the Gender Links Justice Program Officer of Peace Women,

Source: Africa: Breaking the silence in ritual killings

From Namibia: “Ritual killings: Cry my beloved humankind”

A few days ago my attention was drawn by an Op-Ed article in an online Namibian newspaper, New Era Live. The article was entitled: “Ritual killings: Cry my beloved humankind“. It is a cry for attention, a cry for vigilance, a cry for leadership and for stiffer sanctions for those who are responsible for these heinous crimes, including traditional healers and – too often – relatives of the innocent victims, in many cases young children.

The anonymous author (a staff reporter) starts his or her plea stating “I want to share with you the excruciating pain that stabs my heart every time I read or hear about the senseless loss of life due to ritual or muti killings.”

I was shocked reading this. Is the present situation that bad? How frequent are ritual murrders (‘muti murders’) in Southern Africa?

I monitor relevant events in African countries with particular interest, as this site also demonstrates. Whereas I feel a kind of pride or joy when confronted with readers and/or reporters rejecting the repulsive practices of ritual or muti murders, it also hurts to see a confirmation of the plague that terrorizes too many people in too many African countries.

“One shudders to think about the many muti killings of people, young and old, that are happening almost on a daily basis in Southern Africa in particular, (…)”, the anonymous author continues. 

Also revealing is the following statement:

“A study carried out in South Africa by scholars Randitsheni, Masoga and Madzusi (2017) revealed that “[some] pastors, businessmen, traditional leaders and leaders are involved in ritual murders”.  The three scholars give more details of their research findings in their paper titled “Some perspectives on the impacts of ritual murders in the Vhembe district of South Africa: An interpretive phenomenological approach” which was published in the Journal of Social Sciences (Volume 48, Number 3).  This is not to give an impression that ritual murders occur in South Africa only. Other scholars who have conducted researches in this area have revealed similar results in Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, Tanzania, Nigeria, Eswatini, Uganda, and Namibia, just to mention a few countries. “

I am flabbergasted. At the same time I am proud of the author and everyone who thinks alike. It strikes me that this cry for justice, for the eradication of this scourge in our contemporary societies, comes from Namibia. Apparently, much more occurs beneath the surface in this Southern African country than one would think at first glance. The ‘New Era’ newspaper which published this op-ed is a leading source of community and national news in Namibia. Its owners and editors are to be commended for their courageous decision to publish this view. May many more newspaper owners, editors and journalists join the war against ritualistic murders in Africa.

Together it will be possible to eradicate this medieval belief in superstition. Nothing is impossible. “You never fail until you stop trying.”
(webmaster FVDK)

“Ritual killings: Cry my beloved humankind”

Published: October 22, 2020
By: New Era Live, Namibia

If you are reading this article, wherever you are, prepare to shed tears. Prepare to travel with me on this emotional journey, as I interrogate the evil that men do, that of ritual killings, which have left people questioning the essence of life, since some people can take it away from you or someone at once, just like that. I want to share with you the excruciating pain that stabs my heart every time I read or hear about the senseless loss of life due to ritual or muti killings. 

The world has turned topsy-turvy, completely upside down, and everyone’s life is at risk, either directly or indirectly. People fear for their lives and the lives of their children and loved ones. Everyone’s life is in danger as there are some immoral people who have taken the law into their hands, and can decide how many more days you are left with alive on this earth. It is horrendous.

The stonehearted murderers can be anyone ranging from, paradoxically, people closest to you, to complete strangers. The love of riches and fame, the eagerness to get rich quickly without working for it, and the love of power and fame have led people to involve themselves in atrocious, inhuman activities. One shudders to think about the many muti killings of people, young and old, that are happening almost on a daily basis in Southern Africa in particular, and elsewhere in the world. Research reveals that ritual killings are so rampant in Africa that some researchers have described ritual murder as a pandemic. The grisly killings of innocent victims, especially children and women, have shocked communities, societies and the whole world. 

Many unsuspecting victims have been lured by people they know and killed for ritual purposes. We have read and heard about small children and teenagers who have been brutally murdered by their close relatives. As you read this article, or as you sit there at home or in a classroom  – wherever you are  – always bear in mind that you may be a candidate for ritual murder. Many victims have lost their lives through the involvement of their close relatives or loved ones. In these cases, it becomes tricky for the law enforcement agents to prevent such murders as relatives and loved ones are supposed to take care of the children, and not to kill them.

The belief that a human being’s body parts or limps bring luck, riches and power to people has fuelled the crime of ritual killing. Corpses have been discovered without heads, private parts and internal organs, suggesting that these are the most sought-after parts to be used in muti or medicinal concoctions.  As the evil men harvest human body parts for their benefits, societies are traumatised, yet it is in these societies that we find the perpetrators of this heinous crime. It is in these societies that most of the killings are secretly planned and executed. The irony is that some respectable members of these communities promote these ritual murders for various reasons. Some of them are leopards clothed in sheep’s skins.  

A study carried out in South Africa by scholars Randitsheni, Masoga and Madzusi (2017) revealed that “[some] pastors, businessmen, traditional leaders and leaders are involved in ritual murders”.  The three scholars give more details of their research findings in their paper titled “Some perspectives on the impacts of ritual murders in the Vhembe district of South Africa: An interpretive phenomenological approach” which was published in the Journal of Social Sciences (Volume 48, Number 3).  This is not to give an impression that ritual murders occur in South Africa only. Other scholars who have conducted researches in this area have revealed similar results in Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, Tanzania, Nigeria, Eswatini, Uganda, and Namibia, just to mention a few countries. As I write, the Zimbabwean community is failing to come to terms with how a man could have allegedly taken part in the planning and ritual killing of his brother’s seven-year-old son. The account of the cold blooded murder of the fateful boy by the co-accused man, in this case, is available on Youtube for those who have the guts to listen to such a chilling narrative of a despicable act. 

 The ubiquity of ritual murders in Africa proves that the crime is a scourge in our contemporary societies. The crime is a cancer that is spreading in our societies at an alarming rate. The belief in supernatural powers and superstition are the driving forces of ritual murders and sacrificial killings in our societies. Traditional healers tell you, for example, that in order for you to be successful in life, you must kill your son or daughter, or someone you love dearly like your wife. Foolishly, some people believe this and they murder their loved ones for nothing. 
 It is also true that the moral fabric of our societies is decaying at a fast rate. The African concept of Ubuntu seems to be melting away fast, leaving a culture of violence in our societies. One result of the loss of Ubuntu is that the sanctity of human life is no longer respected; this is why some people can be hired to kill for money. 

Concerned researchers on ritual murders have gone to the extent of studying ancient civilisations. They have revealed that the bible is replete with sacrificial killings or offerings of human beings. In some religions, sacrificial killings happen today. 
In order to curb ritual murders, families should be vigilant and protect their children. Community leaders and politicians must denounce these killings at gatherings. Stiffer sentences must be imposed on criminals convicted of ritual murders.  Let us teach the love of one another as humans in our homes. Ubuntu teachings should find a place in our homes. Let us be exemplary to our children since psychologists have proved that children learn what they live. Say no to ritual killings and save lives.

Source: Opinion – Ritual killings: Cry my beloved humankind

Africa Map

Zimbabwe: latest news on the ritual murder of Tapiwa Makore

This is, for the time being, the last series of articles related to the ritual murder of 7-year old Tapiwa Makore from Murewa village, Zimbabwe, last month. See my previous postings on the subject. Interested readers who wish to learn further developments in this muti murder case are advised to use a search machine to find out. The purpose of this site is not to cover each and every aspect of a ritual murder. This site aims to draw attention to the occurrence of this phenomenon – notably in Africa – which constitutes not only a gruesome and heinous murder and crime but also a disrespect for human rights – of both the victim and his or her relatives and the society at large.

No one should live in fear. Freedom from fear is considered an essential human right. Governments are supposed to protect their citizens and correct and punish perpetrators of crimes against an individual or against the society at large.

Warning: the following articles contain graphic details of the gruesome murder (webmaster FVDK).

Father Of Slain Murewa Boy Seeks Closure

Published: October 25, 2020
By: New Zimbabwe – Robert Tapfumaneyi 

The delayed burial of the late seven-year-old Murewa boy, Tapiwa Makore who was brutally murdered for suspected ritual purposes has brought more pain to the deceased’s family.

In an interview with NewZimbabwe.com, the father Munyaradzi Makore, the father of the deceased, he wants his son’s remains interred so that he rests in peace.

However, the challenge the family is facing is Tapiwa’s head is missing, a month after he was slain by an uncle, Tapiwa Makore Snr, and his herd boy, Tafadzwa Shamba. Both have been arrested and are in remand prison.

The local chief is insisting he will not allow Tapiwa to be buried without his head, but the killers are mum on the whereabouts of the head.

“I have finally accepted that my son Tapiwa is dead and that he died a very painful death,” Makore said.

“But what pains me most is that it’s almost a month now and we are still mourning as we are yet to bury the remains of my late son.

“The two killers who murdered my son were arrested and are currently in police custody and the herd boy openly admitted to the killing and he also told the police the person he gave the Tapiwa’s head.

“It’s painful for us knowing who carried the brutal murder. The killers cannot tell us or the police where the head is. What is stopping them from telling us where the head is so that we can finally bury Tapiwa?” Makore said.

He said the family’s appeal was for the murderers to come out in the open and tell them where the missing head is as his remains were now in a bad state.

Makore also appealed with the courts to be firmer when sentencing his son’s killers.

“The courts must also give a stiffer sentence to deter anyone who wants to commit ritual murders. Children must be protected at all cost, no to ritual murders.”

Tapiwa was murdered on the night of September 24 after being kidnapped from the family garden where he was keeping watch.

Source: Father Of Slain Murewa Boy Seeks Closure

More:

Murehwa Ritual Murder Victim’s Father Pleads With Killers For Closure

Murehwa Ritual Murder Victim’s Father Pleads With Killers: Munyaradzi Makore, Tapiwa’s father(Photo Credit: New Zimbabwe)

Published: October 25, 2020
By: iHarare – By Audrey L. Ncube 

The family of the late Tapiwa Makore has pleaded with his killers to let them know where they put his head so that they can finally bury him and find closure.

The delayed burial of the late seven-year-old Murewa boy who was brutally murdered on September 24  for suspected ritual purposes has brought more pain to the deceased’s family as hopes of finding his missing head are diminishing by the day.

Speaking during an interview with New Zimbabwe, the father of the deceased, Munyaradzi Makore appealed to Tapiwa’s murderers to come out in the open and tell them where Tapiwa’s missing head is as his remains are now in a bad state.

“I have finally accepted that my son Tapiwa is dead and that he died a very painful death.”

“But what pains me most is that it’s almost a month now and we are still mourning as we are yet to bury the remains of my late son.”

“The two killers who murdered my son were arrested and are currently in police custody and the herd boy openly admitted to the killing and he also told the police the person he gave the Tapiwa’s head.”

“It’s painful for us knowing who carried the brutal murder. The killers cannot tell us or the police where the head is. What is stopping them from telling us where the head is so that we can finally bury Tapiwa?” Makore said.

It’s been nearly a month since Tapiwa was murdered and the family still hasn’t been able to bury him. All that his father wants is for his son’s missing head to be found so that his son can finally rest in peace.

Makore also appealed with the courts to be firm when sentencing his son’s killers.

“The courts must also give a stiffer sentence to deter anyone who wants to commit ritual murders. Children must be protected at all cost, no to ritual murders,” he said.

Articles you may want to read:

Source: Murehwa Ritual Murder Victim’s Father Pleads With Killers For Closure

More:

2 Skulls Of Kids Discovered In Murehwa And Neither Of Them Is Tapiwa’s

Published: October 23, 2020
By: Timeye, Zimbabwe

The victim, 7-year old Tapiwa Makore

“…We also discovered separate sets of teeth; and two separate skulls, one with lower teeth and the other one with upper teeth but without a tongue…” 

This week marks 5 weeks after 7 year old Tapiwa Makore was discovered dead in Murehwa.

His relatives this week tell ZimEye, the story is still the same since that fateful day on the 17th September when Tapiwa’s body was found dismembered without several parts that include his head.

5 days later two skulls of children were discovered and one of them they boldly deny could ever be Tapiwa’s.

They said they are convinced that the first discovered fresh skull could not be their “son’s”.

Mr Isaac Makore (57), the deceased boy’s granduncle, said the newly discarded skull they chanced on was not his grandnephew’s, but that of a 12-year-old, yet to be identified child’s.

As a result of the uncertainty, Tapiwa is still to find rest, as burial arrangements have been put on hold pending further investigations.

“My grandnephew went missing, and we later discovered his torso with other organs, like the head, hands, and legs missing. We also discovered separate sets of teeth; and two separate skulls, one with lower teeth and the other one with upper teeth but without a tongue.

“Indications are that the other skull belongs to a yet to be identified older child, and not our ‘child’s’, Mr Makore said.

However, the boy’s privates were untouched.

Following Tapiwa’s grisly murder, and the unearthing of more mutilated body parts, villagers are now living in fear of death merchants who could be on the prowl in the area, seeking children’s hearts for ritual purposes.

Tapiwa’s uncle, Mr Simbarashe Makore (38), said it is believed that there could be many children, although not from their area, who could have been killed for ritual purposes, and had their bodies dumped in the proximity of their village.

“We are now living in fear. Our prayer is that the police apprehend the culprits and rid our area of this menace. Who knows, after our children, they may also come for us, their parents. How could someone kill a fellow human being in such cold blood just like that?” he bemoaned.

Ms Easther Makore (52), Tapiwa’s aunt concurred, saying the police should not leave any stone unturned and get to the bottom of the issue as it was mind-boggling that so many human organs could be discovered hard upon her nephew’s demise.

Meanwhile more confusion has built up following the police’s delay in catching the N’anga who allegedly ordered the killing.

 This comes at the backdrop of an unnamed N’anga at the weekend making allegations that Tapiwa’s head was taken to a property in Dzvivarasekwa.  – the investigation continues

WILL TAPIWA MAKORE’S HEAD EVER BE FOUND?

Screenshot – click the link below (‘Source’) to watch the video.

Source: 2 Skulls Of Kids Discovered In Murehwa And Neither Of Them Is Tapiwa’s

More:

Murehwa killing: Boy’s burial delayed

Slain Tapiwa Makore’s father, Mr Munyaradzi Makore, narrates the ordeal to journalists in the company of his wife Ms Linda Munyori

Published: October 21, 2020
By: Nehanda Radio, Zimbabwe 

The burial of the seven-year-old boy, Tapiwa Makore, killed and dismembered in a suspected ritual murder in Murehwa, will be delayed as police need the results of DNA tests on the torso, recovered first, and the limbs, found in a toilet later, to prove all the body parts belong to the boy.

Police are still hunting for the boy’s head, suspected to have been taken for ritual purposes.

The boy was murdered on the night of September 24 this year after being kidnapped earlier from the family garden.

The boy’s uncle, Tapiwa Makore (senior) and the uncle’s domestic worker, Tafadzwa Shamba, have since been arrested for the kidnapping and killing and have been remanded in custody for trial.

Results of the first samples of the torso sent for DNA tests last month were expected last week, but police later recovered the boy’s legs from a toilet and samples from the recovered legs were last week taken for testing.

The test results are expected in about two to three weeks’ time.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the burial might have to be delayed because results cannot be released piecemeal.

“Forensic tests are ongoing,” he said. “We have sent more samples to the laboratory and the family has to wait a bit until the results are out. The boy’s family has been appraised of the developments and they have to be patient until the tests are done.

“A comprehensive report, including all the samples, will be released once they are done with all the tests.”

Asst Comm Nyathi appealed for information on the whereabouts of the missing head.

“Up to now, we have not yet found the boy’s head and we appeal for information from those in the know so that we can recover it,” he said.

“Definitely, someone out there knows where the head is. We appeal for cooperation so that we recover it and complete our investigations.”

Government has also rendered support to the family during their bereavement. 
The Herald

Source: Murehwa killing: Boy’s burial delayed

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Legislators condemn the brutal killing of Tapiwa Makore

Published: October 21, 2020
By: The Herald, Zimbabwe – Farirai Machivenyika Senior Reporter

Zimbabwe – MPs in parliament

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(paragraphs omitted by the webmaster FVDK for not being relevant to the murder case)

Meanwhile legislators condemned the brutal killing of Tapiwa Makore, a seven-year-old boy from Murehwa who was allegedly murdered for ritual purposes. The boy’s body was found mutilated with its head missing. His uncle also named Tapiwa Makore and his herdsman Tafadzwa Shamba have since been arrested as murder suspects.

Cde Togarepi yesterday moved a motion condemning the killing saying the perpetrators deserved to be punished severely for the crime.

He also called on the political and community leadership to conduct awareness campaigns against popular beliefs that human body parts could boost business ventures.

Cde Dexter Nduna also seconded the adoption of the motion saying there was nothing as painful as losing one’s child.

Source: MPs challenged to speak against sanctions

More:

Murdered boy’s family pushes for burial

Published: October 19, 2020
By: NewsdzeZimbabwe

Source: Murdered boy’s family pushes for burial

Zimbabwe – Murehwa ritual murder: Police quiz n’anga

Another development in the sad saga of the ritualistic murder of the young, 7-year old Tapiwa Makore. It must be said that local authorities and notably the local police acted swiftly after the discovery of the victims’ mutilated body, on September 18. Even President Mnangagwa reacted on the muthi (muti) murder, condemning the heinous crime on September 25 (see my posting dated October 2, 2020).

It is believed by superstitious, wicked people that body parts which have been taken – from a living victim (!) – and processed in a particular way, by a traditional healer or witchdoctor (n’anga), that these ritualistic activities will enhance one’s power or wealth.

There is no place for such superstition and disrespect for human life in the year 2020 (or before that year). The rule of law must apply, suspects should be put on trial and judged by an independent judge. And more prevention should take place: through education.  

Warning: The following articles contain graphic details of the cruel murder (webmaster FVDK).

Murehwa ritual murder: Police quiz n’anga

Asst Comm Paul Nyathi

Published: October 16, 2020
By: The Herald, Zimbabwe – Investigations Editor

POLICE have picked up a traditional healer for questioning over the missing head of the seven-year-old Murehwa boy, Tapiwa Makore, suspected to have been murdered for ritual purposes.

Body parts taken in a ritual murder which occurred at Makore Village under Chief Mangwende, would have to be processed in particular ways, the superstitious believe, so that they bring good fortune and riches. 

Police started hunting for the traditional healer they believed was implicated in this killing soon after they arrested the two men they suspect were the actual killers. 

Only a torso and legs were recovered from the dismembered body, but the head is still missing.

In their investigations, police recovered the head of another child, a 12-year-old, in the same village, but think it may have been exhumed from a grave.

Although the police did not disclose the name of the traditional healer, they confirmed he was being questioned.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said police have established that they had been given a lot of misleading information on the death of the boy and people were hiding crucial information.

“We have realised that some people are not telling the truth and they are hiding crucial information. But we will surely get to the bottom of the matter and the truth will come out,” said Asst-Comm Nyathi.

Tapiwa was allegedly murdered for ritual purposes by his uncle Tapiwa Makore (Senior) who used his own domestic worker, Tafadzwa Shamba (40).

The boy was kidnapped in the family garden in the village. 

Shamba, a herdsman, and the boy’s uncle have since been arrested and taken to court facing murder charges.

They now await trial while in remand prison. They were remanded in custody to October 26 in absentia yesterday, as they are still assisting police with investigations.

Meanwhile, police have taken the head of a 12-year-old child recently found in the same village for forensic analysis.

There has been no report of another missing child in that age group, creating room for suspicion that the head could have been exhumed from a grave.

“The other head found in Makore village is now subject to forensic analysis. So far no report of a missing person falling in that category has been received by the police. We are still investigating that matter,” said Asst-Comm Nyathi.

During investigations, Shamba recently told detectives he killed the boy by cutting off the head with a knife in the dead of the night, while the boy’s uncle was holding a torch.

Shamba said after the alleged murder, he carried a black plastic bag containing the head and the dismembered body while his employer, who is the boy’s uncle, carried another bag containing the arms and legs.

He led the team of detectives to the uncle’s homestead where he said he fed the boy, drugged him with kachasu and locked him up in a room for hours.

Shamba said he met the boy’s uncle around midnight and took the boy to a nearby mountain, where they allegedly killed him. 

“Around midnight, we opened the door and I carried the boy, who was still in deep slumber to a mountain in the village. Mr Makore carried the knives and the plastic bags. While here (in the mountain), I pressed the boy to the ground and cut off his head with a sharp knife, while his uncle was holding a torch for lighting.

“I also cut off the hands and legs, but we packed the parts in different plastic bags. I carried the one with the torso and the head while Mr Makore carried another one containing the legs and hands,” he said.

At the scene, investigators saw human waste, believed to have been excreted by the boy during the murder.

Shamba told detectives that he cleaned the scene of the blood and set the grass on fire to destroy evidence.

He said while walking back to Makore’s homestead, he felt the load was becoming heavier before dumping the torso near Mr Summer Murwira’s homestead.

While at Makore’s homestead, Shamba said he was instructed to put the head in one of the rooms, which he did.

The following day, Shamba said he dumped the arms and legs at a nearby grave as police investigations were intensifying.

Source: Murehwa ritual murder: Police quiz n’anga

More on the same subject:

Pastor Charles Charamba Speaks Out On Murehwa Ritual Killing

Pastor Charles Charamba

Published: October 14, 2020
By: iHarare, Zimbabwe – Audrey L. Ncube 

Gospel musician Pastor Charles Charamba has condemned the killing of children for ritual purposes. The condemnation comes in the wake of the murder of a seven-year-old Murehwa boy, Tapiwa Makore,  for ritual purposes, allegedly by his uncle.

In an interview with Hmetro, Pastor Charamba decried the loss of young children as a result of heinous and evil actions for rituals and witchcraft purposes.

“The disappointing aspect in this account of Tapiwa from Murewa is that those men that wanted to be rich, wanted to be rich during this lockdown knowing that everyone in the world has been impoverished.

“They were led by that need to be rich when everything else around the world is stagnant, that is very evil,” Pastor Charamba said.

Pastor Charamba revealed that he is pained by the unfortunate killing of Tapiwa Makore for ritual purposes. He emphasized how the Bible talks about the sacredness of life.

“For me as a pastor, it is very unfortunate that we lost Tapiwa and others of his age but I am saying that life is sacred.

He explained it is painful and unfortunate that these killings are done by people very close to the children. He called on guardians to keep children safe and not to fall under the influence of superstition as it is an enemy of society.

“It is something that is very sad and very unfortunate because it is being done by people who are supposed to be trusted custodians of the children. They abuse their offices and also abuse their relationships with their victims.

“We are hoping that the Almighty guides us so that our society changes and improves when it comes to issues that have to do with trust.

“Above all, the way in which we people want money nowadays is not a good way at all and this is also being caused by what is known as superstition because what people usually regard as worshipping is not actually worshipping,” he said.


SourcePastor Charles Charamba Speaks Out On Murehwa Ritual Killing

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Murehwa Ritual Murder Details Emerge… Victim’s Uncle Wanted To Use Body Parts To Get Rich And For Horticulture Project

Tapiwa Makore Senior

Published: October 1, 2020
By: iHarare, Zimbabwe – Sharon Chirisa

Murehwa Ritual Murder Details… Victim’s Uncle Wanted To Get Rich 

The senseless murder of 7 year old Tapiwa Makore from Makore Village under Chief Mangwende, in Murehwa, left the whole country with a bitter taste in their mouths.

The whole country is still recovering from the heinous crime and never has been the pursuit of justice been swift and urgent before.

Tapiwa Makore was abducted while he was watching over his family’s garden from thieving monkeys, only for his mutilated corpse to turn up the next day, being ravaged by the Makore neighbors’ oblivious dogs.

A breakthrough emerged in the case, after the cattle herdman, Tafadzwa Shamba was arrested in connection with the murder, eventually leading to Tapiwa’s namesake and uncle, as being the mastermind behind the cold blooded killing.

The police were correct in treating it as a ritual murder, because that is what it turned out to be after further investigations.

Ritual murders are often accompanied by mutilation and the dismemberment of certain body parts which are believed to be the main ingredients for spells, this mostly includes the head, private parts, tongue and sometimes the eyes and limbs.

The reason behind Tapiwa Makore’s murder is more shocking like the murder itself.

According to state broadcaster reports earlier this week, his uncle had him killed because he wanted to increase his wealth and boost his horticulture project using dark magic.

Tapiwa Makore’s other body parts were taken to a yet to be identified witch doctor, who would then perform the spell.

Even more chilling was the fact that Tapiwa Makore Senior stood by, holding a torch for illumination, as Tafadzwa Shamba was murdering his nephew.

An eerily composed Tafadzwa Shamba appeared on TV indicating on the crime scene  and narrating the horrific details leading to Tapiwa Makore’s final hours.

Tapiwa Makore’s final hours must have been frightening and lonely as he was detained in the home of the man who was not only a trusted family member, but his namesake as well.

The boy was restrained, drugged using an illicit brew of alcohol and then taken to a mountain in the night where he was decapitated and mutilated.

His uncle Tapiwa Makore Snr , initially denied the accusations but an arrest was made.

Makore and Shamba are currently remanded in custody, awaiting trial on the 13th of October 2020.

The stain of his death is one that will linger on in the psyches of many.

Source: Murehwa Ritual Murder Details Emerge… Victim’s Uncle Wanted To Use Body Parts To Get Rich And For Horticulture Project

Boy sacrificed by shaman in Uganda where child sacrifice is big business

In Uganda ritual murder of children is rampant and in many cases witchdoctors are involved in these cruel crimes. It is shocking to read that with an estimated 3 million traditional ‘healers’ or witchdoctors, hundreds of Ugandan children are kidnapped and murdered for ritualistic purposes. Human sacrifice is a thriving business (see below).

The good news is that also in Uganda there are people fighting against these medieval practices, based on superstition, ignorance and facilitated by the lack of rule of law in this country where President Museveni clings desperately to power. He rules increasingly with an iron fist, after initially being welcomed as a liberator, in the 1980s. Respect for human rights in Uganda is a mockery as long as barbaric practices such as human sacrifices continue to exist.

Warning: the following articles contain graphic details of gruesome practices and crimes (webmaster FVDK).

Boy Sacrificed by Muslim Shaman in Uganda Where Child Sacrifice Is Big Business

A Ugandan police officer holds a “No Child Sacrifice sign.” (Image credit: CBN News)

Published: September 30, 2020
By: CBN News – Steve Warren – George Thomas         

A disturbing report out of Uganda is the latest confirmation of an evil practice that CBN News first reported about years ago.

A 13-year-old Christian girl and her 11-year-old brother were reportedly abducted by a radical Muslim woman two years ago and sold to a witchdoctor for ritual sacrifice. 

Morning Star News (MSN) reports Sulaiman Pulisi, a former imam who became a Christian three years ago, said in July 2018 his daughter, then 13, and his then-11-year-old son, Abdulmajidu, disappeared from their home in eastern Uganda’s Kachiribong village, Kasasira Town in Kibuku District. 

Local police rescued Pulisi’s daughter from a house owned by a Muslim witchdoctor or shaman named Isifu Abdullah’s on Sept. 16.

“We are mourning for our son who is alleged to have been sacrificed,” Pulisi told Morning Star. “We are mourning with my daughter, who has been used as a sex object by the Muslim shaman.”

Law enforcement authorities later discovered Sania Muhammad, a Muslim woman living in Kasasira located in eastern Uganda, and two others had sold the two children to the witchdoctor in reprisal for their father’s conversion to Christianity. 

Police believe Abdullah offers human sacrifices as part of his witchcraft activities, according to MSN.  Both the witchdoctor and the woman were arrested in the boy’s disappearance and are awaiting charges. 

There are an estimated 3 million traditional “healers,” or witchdoctors, in Uganda. As CBN News has reported, hundreds of Ugandan children are kidnapped and murdered as part of a thriving human sacrifice business.

CBN News Goes Undercover to Search for Child Killers

In 2017, CBN News Sr. International Correspondent George Thomas joined undercover detectives, armed police, and a pastor hunting for a witch doctor accused of kidnapping and killing children.

Pastor Peter Sewakiryanga leads the search. He runs Kyampisi Childcare Ministries, a Christian effort to stamp out child sacrifice in Uganda.  He describes the witch doctors’ brutal ritual.

“When they get the child, most times they cut the neck, they take the blood out, they take the tissue, they cut the genitals or any other body organs that they wish that the spirits want.”

Pastor Peter says these gruesome crimes happen almost every month.

“The problem is increasing and many children are killed, and there are very few actually that survive, most of them die.”

Child sacrifice in Uganda is such a serious and widespread problem that the government has even set up an anti-child sacrifice and human trafficking task force. (italics added by the webmaster).

Superstition and Money

Mike Chibita is Uganda’s top law enforcement official, the equivalent of America’s Attorney General. He says superstition and the desire to get rich quick contribute to high child sacrifice rates in his country.

“The connection is that these witch doctors come and tell people who want to get rich that in order to get rich you need to sacrifice human blood,” said Chibita, who serves as Uganda’s director of public prosecutions.

Kyampisi Childcare Ministries is the only organization in the country providing long-term financial and medical care for survivors of child sacrifice attempts.

“We want to see that the life of a child who has survived is supported, that they are socially able to stand and heal from the injuries, and that they can have a life after that,” said Pastor Sewakiryanga.

He also works with Ugandan lawmakers like Komuhangi Margaret to help draft specific laws targeting perpetrators of child sacrifice.

“Every Ugandan must wake and say, ‘No to sacrificing our children’,” said Margaret. “Our children are the future of this country.”

Source: Boy Sacrificed by Muslim Shaman in Uganda Where Child Sacrifice Is Big Business

Zimbabwe: one week after the ritual murder of 7-year old Tapiwa Makore

A too familiar story. A relative involved in the ritual killing of a young boy in Zimbabwe. As it appears, the eldest brother of the deceased boy’s father was the one who ordered an accomplice to murder his nephew. As more news emerge about the behavior of the prime suspect after his nephew was missing and his mutilated body was found, the story sounds unbelievable; yet it is the harsh truth. When reading the details of the muti murder of 7-year old Tapiwa Makore it is hard to believe that this indeed happened in real life. This is the 21st century.

As a result, the community which was struck with the news of the heinous crime is left paralyzed with anger and with fear. Parents watch their children every minute of the day and when their kinds go to school they want them to return early, before it gets dark.

Makore Village is in shock.

Warning: the following article contains graphic details of the muthi murder (webmaster FVDK).

The murdered boy’s family a week later

The victim, 7-year old Tapiwa Makore

Published: October 3, 2020
By: Timeye, The Truth & The Future

Driving to Makore Village under Chief Mangwende in Murehwa, children no longer talk to strangers no matter any amount of cajoling. The message has sunk, don’t talk to strangers lest you meet Tapiwa’s fate.

The recent ritual murder of Tapiwa Makore, has instilled fear among the young and elderly villagers alike who have since strongly warned their children against entertaining strangers, especially motorists.

In the same week, another human head was also found in the village and the identity is yet to be established.

The Herald struggled to get to the Makore homestead as most people, especially children, coming from school were reluctant to assist with directions.

Luckily a visibly drunk man came to the rescue and offered to lead The Herald team to the homestead.

On arrival at the homestead, most villagers were angry, emotional and debating as to the possible reasons of the murder. This was complete abomination to them. They were aghast at the manner in which the remains of the boy had been discovered after he had gone missing.

A torso believed to be his was found being dragged by a neighbour’s dog. The head and other parts of the body were missing. Arms and legs were later found following a spoor.

That was not all. The dogs had also dragged a human head, which, according to medical practitioners, belongs to a person who should be around 12 years old.

Detectives questions Tafadzwa Shamba over a pair of blood-stained trousers found at his employer’s homestead during investigations

The boy’s uncle Tapiwa Makore (senior) and his employee Tafadzwa Shamba have been arrested in connection with the murder.

What surprised the community was the efforts the uncle had put in the search of the boy once he had been declared missing. He had been leading in the search and was a pillar of strength to his young brother constantly assuring him that they will find the boy alive.

He even had the temerity to chastise his young brother’s wife for being careless in Tapiwa’s disappearance. But alas! After playing a leading role in the search the elder brother to the boy’s father turned out to be one of the chief murder suspect.

Blood-stained clothes were found in one of his rooms. Tapiwa Makore (senior), had earlier commendably assisted at the funeral. At one point, he reportedly got emotional, accusing the boy’s mother Ms Munyori of being irresponsible as mystery on the whereabouts of the boy deepened.

As fate would have it, his luck ran out. Some relatives assigned to clean his house stumbled upon a pair of trousers and a shirt stained with blood. They immediately tipped off detectives who were all over the village investigating the boy’s murder.

Circumstantial evidence pointed to him as the architect of the crime who had instructed Shamba to kill the boy.

In an interview, the boy’s mother broke down narrating how her brother-in-law had harassed her threatening to beat her up at the funeral for failing to account for the boy.

“He once threatened to beat me up, accusing me of being irresponsible and failing to account for my missing son. You can even ask my husband and other relatives who heard him threatening me, but to my surprise he is the one who was picked up by the police for murder,” she said sobbing.

Equally at a loss of words, was the boy’s father Mr Munyaradzi Makore. He said his brother had been a pillar of strength during the search and he remained optimistic that the boy would be found alive.

“It’s difficult to believe that my own brother who had been with me throughout the search and funeral, turned out to be a suspect in the murder case. We were together on Thursday night (September 24) searching for my son. He would strengthen me, with words of hope that the boy could be alive somewhere,” he said.

When asked what could have led to his brother allegedly killing his nephew, Tapiwa’s father was at a loss of words. He too was surprised because there was no bad blood between the two families as they enjoyed cordial relations as evidenced by naming the boy Tapiwa after his elder brother.

On burial arrangements, Mr Makore (junior) said DNA samples had been taken from the boy’s mother and they were initially told to wait between two and three weeks for the results.

“We have paid US$330 and we hope to pay the balance on collection of the results. The results will determine the burial date.

“If the torso is indeed his, then we may proceed to bury the available parts of the body, but it is strange. Burying a headless body?” the boy’s father said shaking his head.

A villager Mr Summer Murwira was the first to discover the torso that was being dragged by his dog at his homestead last Friday morning.

“Early Friday morning, I was brushing my teeth outside the house when a female relative came telling me that Tapiwa was missing. Just after she left, I saw our black puppy dragging a torso, but we could not easily tell whose it was. However, I could tell that it was indeed a mutilated human body. I called other villagers and we resolved to send a message to the Makore family who were searching for their missing child.

“When the relatives came, the trail left by the puppy led us to the spot where the torso had been dropped. We then noticed blood spots and immediately reported the matter to the police,” said Mr Murwira.

But what kind of boy was Tapiwa and how did he relate to his peers in the area? Tafadzwa Shamba narrates how he entered a kitchen hut at Tapiwa Makore’s (senior) homestead to collect food for the boy

The Herald visited Nyamutumbu Primary School where he was a Grade One pupil. Staff at the school described him as a well-behaved, intelligent and highly promising pupil who had a bright future. They just could not understand how his life had been cut short and for what reason as he was an exemplary pupil

“Tapiwa was a promising young boy, dedicated to school work, well-behaved and respectful. It’s sad that he passed on at such a young age. His attendance at school was excellent considering that most children in these rural communities absent themselves for no good reason.

“He was very social and he would interact well others here at school,” said one of his teachers.

Sources at the school said the headmaster had since written to the district education offices seeking authority to end lessons early to allow pupils to walk home before sunset.

“We have some pupils who walk long distances for up to three hours to get home. I understand our headmaster has since written to the district office requesting to be allowed to end lessons at 3pm daily. “This arrangement will ensure all children get home early for security reasons,” said a source.

The Herald also tracked down the alleged murderer’s relatives, the Shamba family. In an interview at Chinyani Village in Murehwa, Mr Gaylord Shamba, younger brother to Tafadzwa’s late father, said the family was engaging the Makore family.

“We engaged the Makore family through our councillor and they welcomed us. They understood the fact that one deviant person cannot spoil the whole clan. We attended the funeral and provided loads of firewood and some maize meal. That is not enough, we intend to continue assisting until burial,” he said.

Mr Shamba said the family was ready to compensate the Makore family.

Source: Murdered Boy’s Family A Week After

Murewa ritual killing: President Mnangagwa decries evil act (Zimbabwe)

The cruel ritualistic killing of 7-year old Tapiwa Makore in Zimbabwe inspired the president of this country, Emmerson Mnangagwa, to raise his voice against the killing of children for ritualistic purposes – because the gruesome murder of the young boy is not the only ritual killing case in his country. The police found evidence on the crime scene that more children had been murdered, possibly by the same suspect, Tafadzwa Shamba, a herdsman in the same village with the Makores.

Mnangagwa’s condemnation of ritual murders triggered the anger of an opposition politician, Paul Nyathi, who accused President Mnangagwa of hypocrisy. He accused Mnangagwa of several politically motivated murders. Moreover, while Mnangagwa was Minister of State for National Security – under then President Robert Mugabe – the 5th Brigade of the Zimbabwe National Army killed thousands of civilians in the Matabeleland region. These massacres, known as the Gukurahundi, lasted from 1983 to 1987, and resulted in an estimated 20,000 to 30,000 deaths. 

Warning: the following articles contain graphic details of a cruel crime (webmaster FVDK).

Murehwa ritual killing: President decries evil act

The late Tapiwa Makore

Published: September 26, 2020
By: The Herald, Zimbabwe  

President Mnangagwa yesterday condemned the killing of children for ritual purposes, saying the Government was concerned with all forms of threats and abuse to children and vowed to end violence against them.

The condemnation comes in the wake of the murder of a seven-year-old Murehwa boy, Tapiwa Makore, last week for ritual purposes, allegedly by a herder.

“I am disturbed by the loss of young children as a result of heinous and evil actions for rituals and witchcraft purposes. These cold-hearted acts of murder have no place in our country.

“The stakeholders in our criminal justice system must speedily and strongly deal with perpetrators so that this evil trend is expunged from our society,” said the President during a virtual Junior Cabinet meeting at State House yesterday.

Murder suspect Tafadzwa Shamba

Tapiwa was looking forward to resuming classes on November 9, and rejoining his peers at Nyamutumbu Primary School in Murehwa after a six-month hiatus.

Like millions of other pupils across the country, particularly his Grade One fellows, he was raring to go as the phased reopening of schools, which comes into effect on Monday, puts an end to their daily routine of playing house, horseplay and hopscotch, in-between errands as may be assigned by their parents.

The seven-year-old Tapiwa was his parents’ gift from God as was reflected in his name. With school lessons temporarily shelved owing to Covid-19, the bubbly boy, like the gift he was, often helped out his mother in tending to their vegetable garden.

In the morning of Thursday September 17, as she has always done, Tapiwa’s mother prepared food for him and set him off on the excursion to keep stray livestock away from their vegetable patch.

She and her husband were set to relieve him later in the afternoon.

However, fate had decided otherwise. It was set in the stars that they would never see their beloved son alive again, neither were they to bury him intact.

Unbeknown to them, the Makore family had set in motion a chain of events that would leave the serene community of Makore Village in Chief Mangwende’s domain of Murehwa District, dumbfounded, distressed and in deep mourning as a dark cloud of both grief and fear engulfed them.

Tapiwa’s story reads like a horror movie where death is traded with such abandon that the grisly ceases to be abnormal with the Grim Reaper, in his dark shrouds, hooded robe and scythe daring the living as they dare each other.

Bereft of words, the community fretfully tries to come to terms with what could have befallen their child; for in African societies, a child belongs to all. No one knows what he went through, and how the Grim Reaper tore through his fragile heart to “reap” his soul. All else pointed to ritual murder.

When Tapiwa’s parents got to the garden around 3pm, where they expected to see him as usual, they were confronted by his “last meal”, untouched, and his pair of shoes. Their boy was nowhere to be seen.

The parents’ enquiries on the whereabouts of their cherished son from other children, who were also keeping watch over their gardens revealed that Tapiwa had last been seen swimming in a pond close-by.

A visit to the pond, however, did not yield any result. Suddenly an air of fear filled them as they alerted other villagers of the missing boy, resulting in an immediate search of the area.

Nonetheless, the search, which was immediately conducted into the wee hours of the night and the morrow, yielded nothing; except more pain, anxiety and regret. By then, the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) had joined in the search.

The following day, Friday September 18, villagers reported that a neighbour had woken up to an enigmatic sight in his yard. He discovered his dog and puppies feasting on human organs. The body had its head, neck, both legs and arms hacked off.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said of the discovery then:

“The body of the boy was later discovered on September18, 2020, being eaten by dogs with the head, arms and legs chopped off for suspected ritual purposes.”

With the police leaving no stone unturned, one of the suspects, Tafadzwa Shamba was nabbed on kidnap and murder charges, while his two alleged accomplices are still at large.

Shamba, a herdsman in the same village with the Makores, and his co-conspirators ostensibly allegedly waylaid the boy from his family’s garden, took him to a mountain and detained him for the entire day.

The herdsman was promised US$1 500 for his part in the kidnap and subsequent gruesome murder.

However, before the envisaged windfall, Shamba’s luck ran out, as the blood-stained clothes he wore on the day he allegedly committed the crime betrayed him.

Naturally, the discovery of Tapiwa’s dismembered body, and one of the suspects’ subsequent arrest would have put closure to the sad story, as some questions could have been answered.

That was not to be. More human body parts were found strewn all over the place including a skull. However, this turned out not to be Tapiwa’s.  This discovery with all the trappings of the macabre, led to more questions than answers.

Could there be a conspiracy to wipe out children from the area for ritual purposes? Has the area’s Grim Reaper made a date with the Makore villagers for a ransom as an appeasement for some ill-informed engagement from the past?

Villagers and the police unearthed more than they could chew. Among the skulls found, was one that looked so old it could not be linked to the victim’s; the other one was still blood-stained, but with the eyes gorged out and missing jawline. The chin and tongue were also missing.

Also discovered were a fire-singed child’s palm, a jaw with seven lower teeth, and other body pieces.

It is not clear how many other children could have met their fate in Tapiwa’s manner, which has left a cold chill running through the villagers’ spines.

Tapiwa’s relatives are convinced that the discovered fresh skull could not be their “son’s”.

Mr Isaac Makore (57), the deceased boy’s granduncle, said the newly discarded skull they chanced on was not his grandnephew’s, but that of a 12-year-old, yet to be identified child’s.

As a result of the uncertainty, Tapiwa is still to find rest, as burial arrangements have been put on hold pending further investigations.

“My grandnephew went missing, and we later discovered his torso with other organs, like the head, hands, and legs missing. We also discovered separate sets of teeth; and two separate skulls, one with lower teeth and the other one with upper teeth but without a tongue.

“Indications are that the other skull belongs to a yet to be identified older child, and not our ‘child’s’, Mr Makore said.

However, the boy’s privates were untouched.

Following Tapiwa’s grisly murder, and the unearthing of more mutilated body parts, villagers are now living in fear of death merchants who could be on the prowl in the area, seeking children’s hearts for ritual purposes.

Tapiwa’s uncle, Mr Simbarashe Makore (38), said it is believed that there could be many children, although not from their area, who could have been killed for ritual purposes, and had their bodies dumped in the proximity of their village.

“We are now living in fear. Our prayer is that the police apprehend the culprits and rid our area of this menace. Who knows, after our children, they may also come for us, their parents. How could someone kill a fellow human being in such cold blood just like that?” he bemoaned.

Ms Easther Makore (52), Tapiwa’s aunt concurred, saying the police should not leave any stone unturned and get to the bottom of the issue as it was mind-boggling that so many human organs could be discovered hard upon her nephew’s demise.

Mr Summer Murwira (78), a nephew to the Makore family, at whose homestead Tapiwa’s dismembered body was found, said it (body) was bloodless when it was discovered.

Another villager weighed in, saying: “I do not think the place the torso was found is where he was murdered, otherwise there would have been blood stains all over. This is a serious matter.

“We now fear for our children. No one even wants to attend to the gardens anymore, or guard them against roaming livestock since the incident occurred.” —  (Additional reporting by Kingstone Mapupu — Kwayedza).

Source: Murehwa ritual killing: President decries evil act

President Mnangagwa’s remarks provoked an outcry from Paul Nyathi, a Zimbabwean opposition politician, which is interesting to note (webmaster FVDK).

“Mr President, All Murders Must Be Condemned And Stopped”

President Emmerson Mnangagwa 

Published: September 26, 2020
By: ZimEye The Truth & The Future – Paul Nyathi

President Mnangagwa who himself is accused of several politically motivated murders and abductions yesterday condemned the killing of children for ritual purposes, saying the Government was concerned with all forms of threats and abuse to children and vowed to end violence against them.

The condemnation comes in the wake of the murder of a seven-year-old Murehwa boy, Tapiwa Makore, last week for ritual purposes, allegedly by a herder.

While it is noble for Mnangagwa to condemn the killings of innocent children the President himself has a history of killing which taints his otherwise noble call. Zimbabweans have through the years called on Mnangagwa to speak to the murders attributed to his authority and call for an end to the wanton killing of citizens for political purposes as he has done on the killing of children for ritual purposes.

“I am disturbed by the loss of young children as a result of heinous and evil actions for rituals and witchcraft purposes. These cold-hearted acts of murder have no place in our country.

“The stakeholders in our criminal justice system must speedily and strongly deal with perpetrators so that this evil trend is expunged from our society,” said Mnangagwa during a virtual Junior Cabinet meeting at State House on Friday.

While Mnangagwa was Minister of State for National Security, the 5th Brigade of the Zimbabwe National Army killed thousands of civilians in the Matabeleland region. These massacres, known as the Gukurahundi, lasted from 1983 to 1987, and resulted in an estimated 20,000 to 30,000 deaths.

More recently military officials – many behind his rise to power – have been accused of benefiting from the rich Marange diamond fields in eastern Zimbabwe, with reports of killings and human rights abuses there.

His ruthlessness, which it could be argued he learnt from his Rhodesian torturers, is said to have been seen again in 2008 when he reportedly masterminded Zanu-PF’s response to former President late Robert Mugabe losing the first round of the presidential election to long-time rival the late Morgan Tsvangirai.

The military and state security organisations unleashed a campaign of violence against opposition supporters, leaving hundreds dead and forcing thousands from their homes. Tsvangirai then pulled out of the second round and Mugabe was re-elected in a one man race.

On August 1 2018, the Zimbabwean army shot at protestors killing at least twelve and injuring many others. The government of Mnangagwa again denied involvement. A commission headed by Mohlante found the army responsible for the killings. The commission made recommendations and all were ignored by Mnangagwa’s military government. None of the recommendations were carried out.

In January 2019, more protestors were killed by the same army in cold blood. Scores of women were raped, some in front family members. A brazen Mnangagwa, would later demand to see graves of those killed and the women raped should come to him that he can believe that such atrocities took place at the hands of the army he directs. Many Zimbabweans were shocked and hurt by such reckless statements from a heartless president.

Source: Mr President, All Murders Must Be Condemned And Stopped

South Africa: muthi suspected for murder of two Orange Farm kids

Allegedly, another case of muti murder in South Africa. Muti or muthi murder is the killing of a person with the intention to use body parts for ritual purposes to enhance one’s power, prestige or wealth. Muti murders occur frequently in Southern Africa, in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Mozambique, Malawi, Lesotho and eSwatini (formerly called Swaziland).

All ritualistic killings, including muti murders, are based on superstition. Its occurrence is widespread but nobody knows the exact number of victims of these gruesome and heinous crimes. As can be seen from the picture below, it is not an imaginary phenomenon which exists only in the minds of the people. The mere suspicion of a ritualistic killing draws large crowds, expressing their indignation, their fears and their protests against these medieval practices which cannot be left unpunished (webmaster FVDK).

Muthi suspected for murder of two Orange Farm kids

Residents of Orange farm, south of Johannesburg marching after the discovery of bodies of six-year-old Simphiwe Mncina and eight-year-old Mpho Makondo in Extension 4. 
Image: Veli Nhlapo

Published: September 21, 2020
By: Sowetan Live – Tankiso Makhetha  

The discovery of bodies of two children in Orange Farm, south of Johannesburg, comes just five months after another child was killed in the same area under mysterious circumstances.

The community and families believe they may have been victims of muthi killings.

Mpho Makondo, 8, and Simphiwe Mncina, 6, were found dead on Saturday morning after they went missing on Friday night.

They were smudged with a black substance on their mouths and underneath their feet while a note, which their families did not see before it was taken by police as evidence, was left on Makondo’s body. No body parts were missing.

In April, Mzwandile Zitho was found dead in what his family believed was a ritual killing at a tavern about 2km from where community members discovered Mpho and Simphiwe’s bodies.

Mpho and Simphiwe, who lived three houses from each other, were last seen walking home from a salon about 400 metres from their homes. 

The two children had accompanied Mpho’s aunt, Malehlohonolo Malatji, to the salon. 

Mpho’s father, Moeketsi Malatji yesterday told Sowetan how horrified he was after finding his daughter lying naked, behind a boulder. 

He described the children as best friends who were always together. 

“The last person who saw them was my sister. They had gone to the salon down the road with her, but she told them to go home when it was getting dark at about 6pm,” Malatji said.

 “We started a search party with the community, and went into every household in our neighbourhood and we didn’t find them. We stopped looking for them at about 4am on Saturday.”

Malatji said he received a call from his daughter’s mother at about 6am telling him that they had found the children.

“I could not hold back my tears when I saw my baby’s body lying next to a big rock. She was naked, her arm was broken, she had a grimace on her face, and there was a black substance in her mouth and under (the) feet,” he said.

Their bodies were found a few hundred metres away from each other. 

Simphiwe’s body was dumped in someone’s yard and the note was left on his torso. He was not wearing any top and did not have shoes on.

His aunt, Lindiwe Mojafe, said: “They were innocent children. Why would anyone do this to them? They were never in the habit of playing too far from home. It’s very strange and scary how we found them. It has left us with more questions than answers.” 

A community member who found Simphiwe’s body told Sowetan that he thought it was a muthi killing. 

“I was going to work and I saw a body of a small boy in my yard. I was scared because I thought that people would think that I killed him and left him there. I called the police and other community members to come and see because I didn’t want to be arrested,” the community member said.

Police spokesperson Brig Mathapelo Peters said the motive for the double murder was yet to be established, while a postmortem will be conducted. 

“The investigation into this double murder will be prioritised and escalated to the Provincial Investigating Unit, in line with the SAPS position to prioritise the investigation of crimes committed against women, children and other vulnerable persons,” Peters said. 

Meanwhile, in the Mzwandile Zitho, 5, case earlier in the year, Pontso Mohlanka was arrested and charged for the boy’s murder but charges against her were withdrawn on August 28. 

Mzwandile’s grandmother, Nompumelelo Zitho, yesterday said she did not visit the scene where the killed children were found at the weekend because it gave her flashbacks of what happened to her grandson. 

“I am still trying to come to terms with it. It’s worse now because we won’t find closure. The investigating officer told me that charges were withdrawn because there wasn’t enough evidence,” Zitho said.

Source: Muthi suspected for murder of two Orange Farm kids