Nigeria: Oluwo to lead protest against ritual killings, corruption

It’s not the first time that the Oluwo of Iwoland, Abdulrasheed Akanbi, speaks out against ritualistic murders (see my May 21 and August 11, 2019 postings) and it won’t be the last time either. He is courageous to raise his voice against this practice, which is based on superstition, greed, ignorance AND the absence of the rule of law. Governments must act: governments are obliged to protect their citizens and to uphold the law, to punish perpetrators of heinous crimes such as ritualistic killings, known as ‘money rituals’ in Nigeria.

Traditional leaders have a responsibility too. On previous occasions, the Oluwo of Iwoland, Abdulrasheed Akanbi, has even accused his fellow traditional rulers of complicity, of being involved in ritualistic killings in their domains (see my May 11, 2019 posting). True or not true, failing to address the issue and educate their people, traditional rulers may be reproached to be responsible – to a certain extent – of the atrocities committed (webmaster FVDK).

The Oluwo of Iwo, Oba Abdulrosheed Akanbi

Published: August 20, 2019
By: Brendan Umoren  – Today (Nigeria)

Oluwo of Iwoland, HIM Oba (Dr.) Abdulrosheed Adewale Akanbi, has declared readiness to lead a national protest against ritual killings and corruption in the country.

He lamented the impotency of government at tackling ritual menace, stating that ritual killing is prevalence but deadlier than kidnapping.

Oluwo stated protection of lives is the primary responsibility of the government, noting such can be credited until ritual killings is checkmated by the present administration.

He equally vowed to declare an open protest against corruption characterising public officials in Nigeria.

Oluwo decry daily loss of innocent lives to ritual killings, saying it is an aberration to culture and highest denial of right to life.

According to a statement by the monarch’s press secretary, Alli Ibraheem, Oluwo called for enactment of strict penal system against human ritualists and corrupt individual to safeguard human and protect their lives.

“It is saddens no attention is paid by the federal government to prevalence ritual killings pervading our country. Thousands fall victim of ritual on daily basis but regrettably, no one condemns such. I’m not happy with the neglect of my outcry on daily killings of my sons and daughters by ritualists. These people are deadlier than Bokoharam and kidnappers. I will lead thousands of Nigerians with like minds on national protest against human ritualists and corrupt individual.

“Right now, as I’m talking, evil men are somewhere killing human for rituals in the name of money and promotion. Few relate offering human for sacrifice as culture, no, it is an aberration to every culture. No culture accepts human as sacrifice ” he said.

Oluwo added that “I’m appealing to federal government to declare war against ritual killings. Strict penalty like death should be meted on any one culpable. Killers should be killed. Killing is not a forgivable offence. If federal government refuse, I will declare an open traditional war against ritualists and front a national protest.

“The Afeniferes, OPCs, Agbekoyas and other pan Yoruba cultural groups should join the revolution against ritual killings. Many gave gone to the journey of no return in the hands of ritual killers. It is pathetic, sad and calls for urgent legislation. Ritual killing is decimating our population daily. Must we continue watching the menace? Those in the government are not seeing what we see. Ritual murders is prevalent on the south west, south east. We must rise before it claim all out promising sons and daughters.

“I want to state it clearly here that killing human for rituals is not Yoruba culture. It is alien to our culture. Yoruba culture is pure, clean and attractive. Look at my dress, it is enticing, fascinating, ostentatious and attractive. Only the ignorance and enemies of Yoruba culture will relate ritual killings to Yoruba culture.”

Oluwo said declaring emergency war against ritual killings is acute to secure human lives.

Source: Oluwo to lead protest against ritual killings, corruption

Related article: I’ll lead protest against ritual killings, corruption – Oluwo

Published: August 21, 2019
By: Hameed Oyegbade, Osogbo

The Oluwo of Iwoland,  Oba Abdulrosheed Adewale Akanbi, on Tuesday said he would lead a national protest against ritual killings and corruption.
 
Oluwo, in a statement by his press secretary, Alli Ibrahim, alleged government’s inability to tackle ritual killings which, according to him, are deadlier than kidnapping.
The first-class traditional ruler decried daily loss of lives to ritual killings, describing it as “an aberration to culture and highest denial of right to life.”

Oluwo advocated death penalty for ritualists and corrupt individuals.

He stated: “Thousands fall victim of rituals on a daily basis, but regrettably, no one condemns such. I’m not happy with the neglect of my outcry on daily killings of my sons and daughters by ritualists. Right now as I’m talking, evil men are somewhere killing humans for rituals in the name of money and promotion. No culture accepts human beings as sacrifice. “Killers should be killed. Killing is not a forgivable offence. If the federal government refuses, I’ll declare an open traditional war against ritualists and front a national protest. “Those in the government are not seeing what we see. Ritual killings are prevalent in the southwest and southeast.  I want to state it clearly here that killing humans for rituals is not Yoruba culture. It is alien to our culture. Yoruba culture is pure, clean and attractive.”

Source: I’ll lead protest against ritual killings, corruption – Oluwo

The Oluwo of Iwoland, Oba Abdulrosheed Adewale Akanbi.

Malawi judge sentences three to death for albinism murder

File Photo

Published: August 14, 2019
By: Charles Pensulo, Thomson Reuters Foundation

BLANTYRE, Aug 14 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Three people have been sentenced to death in Malawi for the murder and mutilation of a person with albinism, a court official confirmed on Wednesday, a sanction the judge said would serve as a strong deterrent. 

Malawi is one of the most dangerous countries for people with the condition, who are targeted for ritual killings because of a belief that their body parts can increase wealth. 

Douglas Mwale, Sophie Here and Fontino Folosani killed Prescott Pepuzani in 2015, using a metal bar and a hoe handle before chopping off his hands and legs and burying him in Mwale’s garden in Mchinji district, Central Malawi. 

Passing sentence on Tuesday at the High Court in Mchinji, Judge Esmey Chombo said it would act as a strong deterrent to others and help put an end to the crime. 

Another man was sentenced to death in Malawi in May for murdering a teenager with albinism – the first time the death penalty had been handed down in such a case – though he has not been executed. (Also see my May 4 posting – webmaster FVDK).

Malawi operates a moratorium on the death penalty and last carried out an execution in 1992, according to research by Cornell Law School. 

The southern African country is home to up to 10,000 people with albinism, a lack of pigmentation in the skin, hair and eyes. 

Their body parts can fetch high sums in an underground trade concentrated in Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania. 

There have been more than 160 recorded attacks in Malawi including 22 murders since November 2014, according to human rights group Amnesty International. (italics added by the webmaster FVDK)

The government has denied accusations by rights groups that it is doing little to stop the violence. 

Overstone Kondowe, who heads the African Union for People with Albinism, said he hoped the sentence would curb the attacks. 

“This is really a big step and we want to encourage the Malawi government to continue (with tough penalties),” he said. 

“Whether they will really be hanged or not, it’s not significant. The public will still get the message.” 

Kondowe urged the courts to take a similarly tough stance with other pending cases, adding that the murders of people with albinism had fallen in Tanzania, which has imposed the death penalty in similar cases.

(Reporting by Charles Pensulo; Writing by Emma Batha; Editing by Claire Cozens. Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women’s and LGBT+ rights, human trafficking, property rights, and climate change. Visit news.trust.org)

Source: Malawi judge sentences three to death for albinism murder

Related articles: 

Death penalty handed down for three albino killers in Malawi

An albino boy and his friend in Luwerezi, Malawi (Wikimedia/janjacob).

Published: August 14,2019
By: RFI

Two men and a woman have been sentenced to death in Malawi after being convicted of brutally murdering a man with albinism in 2015.

The “three were found guilty of (murder and possessing human tissue) and have been sentenced to death” in Mchinji on Tuesday, judiciary spokesperson Agness Patemba told Agence France Presse newswire.

Douglas Mwale, Fontino Folosani and Sophie Jere used a metal bar and hoe handle to kill Priscott Pepuzani, chopping off his limbs and burying his body. Body parts of people with albinism are seen as magical, their limbs used in witchcraft for good luck, wealth, or to win elections.

“This ruling enhances our faith in the judiciary and solidifies our belief that we have them as an advocate in our fight to curb killings and abductions against people with albinism,” Ian Simbota, the head of the Association of People Living with Albinism, said after the ruling.

He added that he hoped it would deter others from attacking people with albinism.

President Peter Mutharika created a commission of inquiry last March after a number of people with albinism were attacked. He had come under fire for not adequately responding to the issue.

Amnesty International released a report in May showing that 22 of the 163 cases reported in Malawi since 2014 have been murders, an indication that little had been done to combat the issue.

This is the second death sentence handed down this year for albino murders. In May, Willard Mikaele, the killer of Mphatso Pensulo, 19, was sentenced to death.

Death sentences are usually commuted to life imprisonment, as Malawi has not executed any criminals since 1994.

Source: Death penalty handed down for three albino killers in Malawi

And:

Malawi court sentences three to death over albino killing

Malawi’s musician with albinism, Lazarus Chigwandali, practices his guitar and drum in front of his children before leaving his home at Likuni to go and perform at Area 3 Market in the capital Lilongwe on May 10, 2019 in Likuni on the outskirts of Lilongwe, Malawi. – Chigwandali is not the usual street musician. He is an albino, releasing a professional album, and the star of a documentary produced by Madonna. Albinos are often targeted in brutal attacks in Malawi and other southern African countries because they have white skin due to a hereditary condition that causes lack of pigmentation. (Photo by AMOS GUMULIRA / AFP)

Published: August 14, 2019
By: MalayMail

BLANTYRE, Aug 14 — A Malawi court has convicted and sentenced two men and a woman to death for killing a person with albinism, a judiciary official said today.

Malawi has since late 2014 seen a surge in attacks on people with albinism, whose body parts are often used in witchcraft rituals to bring wealth and luck.

The court found Douglas Mwale, Fontino Folosani and Sophie Jere guilty of murdering Priscott Pepuzani in 2015 using a metal bar and a hoe handle. The trio chopped off Pepuzani’s limbs and later buried the rest of the body in a garden. The “three were found guilty of (murder and possessing human tissue) and have been sentenced to death,” Agness Patemba, judiciary spokeswoman told AFP. The sentence was handed down in the western town of Mchinji on Tuesday.

This is the second death sentence handed down in the country in the past three months following one in May this year for the murder of 19-year-old albino Mphatso Pensulo in 2017.

Malawi has not carried out any executions since 1994, with death sentences commuted to life imprisonment.

Association of People Living with Albinism welcomed Tuesday’s ruling, hoping it will deter attacks on their members.

“This ruling enhances our faith in the judiciary and solidifies our belief that we have them as an advocate in our fight to curb killings and abductions against people with albinism,” said Ian Simbota, leader of the association. 

President Peter Mutharika in March appointed a commission of inquiry to investigate the spate of attacks on people with albinism after coming under mounting criticism over his response to the attacks.

Albinos are often targeted in brutal attacks in Malawi – one of the world’s poorest and most aid-dependent countries – because they have white skin due to a hereditary condition that causes lack of pigmentation. In many cases, those with albinism are targeted for their body parts to be used in witchcraft.

Of 163 cases reported in the country since November 2014, 22 have been murders, Amnesty International said in May 2019, criticising impunity for the crimes. Just 30 per cent of those attacks have been properly investigated, according to official statistics. — AFP (italics added by the webmaster FVDK).

Source: Malawi court sentences three to death over albino killing

And: 
Malawi: 3 sentenced to death over killing of person with albinism – Second death sentence handed down in recent months related to violence against people with albinism.

People with albinism, of which there are up to 10,000 in the country, are often victims of brutal attacks in Malawi [Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi/AP]

Published: August 15, 2019
By: AlJazeera

Malawi court has convicted and sentenced three people to death for killing a person with albinism.

The “three were found guilty of [murder and possessing human tissue] and have been sentenced to death,” judiciary spokeswoman Agness Patemba told the AFP news agency on Wednesday.

The court found Douglas Mwale, Fontino Folosani and Sophie Jere guilty of murdering Priscott Pepuzani in 2015 using a metal bar and a hoe handle. The trio chopped off Pepuzani’s limbs and buried the rest of the body in a garden.

The sentence was handed down in the western town of Mchinji on Tuesday.

This is the second death sentence handed down in the country in the past three months.

Another man was sentenced to death in May for murdering a teenager with albinism – the first time the death penalty had been handed down in such a case – though he has not been executed.

Malawi has not carried out any executions since 1994, with death sentences commuted to life imprisonment.

‘Big step’

In March, Malawi’s President Peter Mutharika appointed a commission of inquiry to investigate the spate of attacks on people with albinism, after coming under mounting criticism over his response to the attacks.

Overstone Kondowe, who heads the African Union for People with Albinism, said he hoped the sentence would curb the attacks.

“This is really a big step and we want to encourage the Malawi government to continue [with tough penalties],” said Kondowe.

“Whether they will really be hanged or not, it’s not significant. The public will still get the message.”

The Association of People Living with Albinism also welcomed the ruling, hoping it will deter attacks on their members.

“This ruling enhances our faith in the judiciary and solidifies our belief that we have them as an advocate in our fight to curb killings and abductions against people with albinism,” said Ian Simbota, leader of the association.

People with albinism, of which there are up to 10,000 in the country, are often victims of brutal attacks in Malawi – one of the world’s poorest and most aid-dependent nations.

This is because of their white skin resulting from a hereditary condition that causes a lack of pigmentation.

Other conditions associated with albinism include vulnerability to bright light, which can cause legal blindness.

Often, individuals with albinism are targeted in Malawi for their body parts to be used in witchcraft.

More than 160 cases have been reported in the country since November 2014, of which 22 have been murders, Amnesty International said in May 2019.

Just 30 percent of those attacks have been properly investigated, according to official statistics. 

Source: Malawi: 3 sentenced to death over killing of person with albinism

PS The original AlJazeera article contains three additional, interesting presentations, one on ‘What is albinism and what causes it?‘ (Infographic), another called ‘Africa investigates: The spell of the albino’ – 25 minutes), and a third called ‘Killed for their bones – Read their story‘, a lengthy article with lots of photos, and worth reading (webmaster FVDK).  

Teenage albino boy killed and dismembered in Burundi

File photo (Getty Images)

Published: August 18, 2019
By: Zamira Rahim 

A teenage albino boy has reportedly been killed and dismembered in Burundi. An albino rights group said the 15-year-old’s body was found late on Saturday, according to the AFP news agency. “The young albino was killed atrociously … his murderers cut his right leg off at the knee, his right arm and his tongue,” said Kassim Kazungu, the head of Albinos Without Borders.

Previous albino killings in the African country have been linked to people practising witchcraft. More than 20 albino people have been killed in Burundi since 2008. (iitalics added by the webmaster FVDK)

In 2016 a five-year-old albino girl was kidnapped from her home by gunmen. The child’s dismembered body was discovered shortly afterwards. (Also see my October 4, 2018 posting).

Burundi’s government has banned witch doctors who claim to perform spells and charms using albino body parts to bring good luck and wealth. But in some areas a complete albino skeleton is worth as much as $75,000 (£62,000), according to the Red Cross. 

Around 500 albino people live in Burundi.

Officials believe killings are carried out by local residents who work with witch doctors in neighbouring Tanzania, where 53 albino people have been killed since 2007 for their body parts. (italics added by the webmaster FVDK).

There are around 170,000 albino people living in Tanzania. 

Source: Teenage albino boy killed and dismembered in Burundi

Related article: 
Albino teen found dismembered in Burundi

Published: August 19, 2019
By: Agence France-Presse

NAIROBI, Kenya – A 15-year-old albino boy has been found dismembered in Burundi a week after going missing, the first such killing in the country in three years, a local albino group said Sunday.

Albinos, who have white skin and yellow hair as a result of a genetic disorder that causes the absence of pigmentation, are killed regularly in some African countries for their body parts, which are used in witchcraft rituals. 

The teenager was found dead late Saturday in the northwest of the country along the Rusizi river separating Burundi from the DR Congo, not far from his home village.

“The young albino was killed atrociously… His murderers cut his right leg off at the knee, his right arm and his tongue,” said Kassim Kazungu, the head of the local association Albinos Without Borders.

More than 20 albinos have been killed in Burundi since 2008, with the last case in 2016 when a five-year-old girl was found dismembered after being taken from her home. 

Kazungu said a four-year-old albino boy had been missing since October 2018 from the village of Cendajuri near the Tanzanian border, but that he had “no hope” of finding him alive.

Some experts believe the demand for albino body parts in Tanzania — where such attacks are the most prevalent — has fueled such killings in border areas.

Source: Albino teen found dismembered in Burundi: association

Ghana: woman arrested in failed ritual murder

The suspect, Humu Iddrisu

Published: May 26 , 2019 , 13:58
By: graphic.com.gh

The Police in Osenase, a community near Akwatia in the Eastern region have arrested a 32-year-old seamstress known as Humu Iddrisu for allegedly conspiring with a ‘Pastor’ in a failed ritual murder of a 31-year-old woman identified as Esther Dzakah.

They allegedly lured her by pretending to offer her spiritual assistance for her husband to be more responsible.

The victim who suffered deep cuts on her left cheek and mouth with her right forefinger cut off is currently on admission at St Dominic Hospital in Akwatia.

Information gathered indicates the suspect, Humu Iddrisu, who is a friend to the victim recommended the suspected Pastor – who is on the run – to help her fix her marital predicament by making her husband who has shirked responsibility in taking care of their children to be more responsible.

On the fateful day, the suspect lured the victim to take Gh₵13,000 belonging to her husband to see the Pastor for the spiritual help.

They lodged at Seth Mensah Guest House around 3pm but around 7:00pm the suspects took the victim to an uncompleted building 500 meters away from the Guest House where the Pastor forcibly gave the victim a concoction as part of the rituals.

The victim suddenly became weak after taking the concoction.

The suspects swiftly hit her head with cement block and bolted.

The victim told Police that, she regained consciousness after few minutes though the suspects thought she was dead. She said while lying motionless she heard the Pastor telling his accomplice that he was going to bring something from the nearby bush.

According to the victim, she quickly gathered strength and struggled with her friend, suspect – Humu Iddrisu – biting her severely on her cheeks before she managed to escape to the guest house and screamed for help.

Workers at the Guest House quickly called the Police around 10:45pm upon which the Police Patrol Team at Awaham junction responded swiftly, rushed the victim who was bleeding profusely to the St.Dominic Hospital where she is currently on admission.

Police investigations led to the arrest of the Humu Iddrisu, but the Pastor is at large.

Police also retrieved the Gh₵13,000 which was in possession of the victim from the crime scene. It is highly suspected that the suspects attempted to rather use the victim for sacrifice.

The Public Relations Officer of the Eastern Regional Police Command, DSP Ebenezer Tetteh told Starr News that the suspect will be put before Court on May 27, 2019 while efforts are underway to arrest the Pastor.

Source: Woman arrested in failed ritual murder

Related article: 
32-year-old seamstress grabbed by police after failed ritual killing attempt 

Published: May 27 or May 26, 2019
By: Nii Ntreh

The police in the Eastern region have arrested a 32-year-old seamstress, Humu Iddrisu, for allegedly conspiring with another in attempt at ritual murder of a 31-year-old woman. Humu Iddrisu, a 32-year-old seamstress at Osenase in the Eastern region, has been arrested by the police for allegedly trying to lure and murder another woman in connivance with another person described as a pastor. According to the Graphic.com.gh report sighted by YEN.com.gh, Humu tried to lure her near-victim Esther Dzikah, by pretending to offer her spiritual assistance for Dzikah’s husband to be more responsible. The report has it that Iddrisu, a friend known to Dzikah, recommended the said pastor, to help Dzikah fix her marital predicament by making her husband who has shirked responsibility in taking care of their children to be more responsible.
 
On the fateful day, the suspect asked Dzikah to take GHC 13,000 belonging to her husband to see the pastor for the spiritual help. They lodged at Seth Mensah Guest House around 3pm. But around 7pm, Iddrisu and the pastor took the victim to an uncompleted building 500 meters away from the Guest House where the pastor forcibly gave the victim a concoction as part of the rituals which made her collapse. The victim told police that she regained consciousness after sometime though the suspects thought she was dead. She said while lying motionless, she heard the pastor telling his accomplice that he was going to bring something from the nearby bush. 

According to the victim, she quickly gathered strength and struggled with her Iddrisu, biting her severely on her cheeks, before she managed to escape to the guest house and screamed for help. Workers at the guest house quickly called the police around 10:45 pm upon which a patrol team at Awaham responded swiftly and rushed the victim who was bleeding profusely to the St.Dominic Hospital where she is currently on admission. Police investigations led to the arrest of the Humu Iddrisu, but the pastor is at large. 

Police also retrieved the GHC 13,000 which was in possession of the victim from the crime scene. It is highly suspected that the suspects attempted to rather use the victim for sacrifice.

Source: 32-year-old seamstress grabbed by police after failed ritual killing attempt

Harsh weather conditions killing albinos in Ghana

Persons with Albinism are trying to engage the public to help deal with climate change.
Photo: Africa Feeds Media

Published: May 21, 2019
By: Senyo Esah 

Albinism is a rare, non-contagious, genetically inherited condition that leads to a lack of pigmentation in the hair, skin and eyes, causing vulnerability to the sun and bright light.

Persons with albinism in Ghana are dying at an alarming rate as a result of climatic change and harsh weather conditions.

The association of Persons with Albinism (PWAs) in Ghana has lamented the harsh weather condition. It said although global warming is a worldwide headache, its members are the hardest hit by its effects.

This is because persons with albinism have peculiar skin condition.

Albinism is a rare, non-contagious, genetically inherited condition that leads to a lack of pigmentation in the hair, skin and eyes, causing vulnerability to the sun and bright light.

The condition is characterized by lack of melanin pigment in the skin, hair, and eyes.

Global warming records

According to co2.earth, the temperature across the global land and ocean surfaces in the year 2018 was 0.86°C (1.55°F).

That is above the 20th-century average and places October temperature as the second highest since global records began in 1880.

Director of the association of Persons with Albinism in Ghana, Newton Katseku told Africafeeds.com that the current era of global warming is a very unbearable time for his members.

He explained that due to the absence of melanin in their skins, they suffer skin cancers as a result of direct exposure to the ultraviolet rays.The association is, therefore, calling on the public to engage in tree planting and other environmental health support programmes to remedy global warming.

Newton Katseku has also called on the government of Ghana to commit resources to Sustainable Development Goal 13 (SDGs 13) which enjoins all nations across the world to adopt environmentally friendly policies to help salvage the increasing rise in global temperature.

He believes fulfilling the goal will bring relief to persons living with albinism as they will have a congenial ecosystem to survive and also contribute their quota to the well-being of the society.

Persons with Albinism are trying to engage the public to help deal with climate change.
Photo: Africa Feeds Media

Anti-albino cultural practices

According to recent statistics, as of 2009, between one in 17,000 and one in 20,000 people were albinos globally.

But in parts of Africa including Ghana persons with albinism also suffer various forms of discrimination.

In certain parts of Africa including Malawi, Tanzania, South Africa among others, albinos are killed for ritual purposes. The belief is that, using their body parts for ritual sacrifices engender success in businesses and other endeavours. (italics added by the webmaster FVDK)

In some communities in Ghana, they are not welcomed and supported.

There are ongoing public engagements with traditional rulers of some communities to amend their cultural practices that are inimical such persons.

Newton Katseku told Africa Feeds that his outfit intends to expand the engagements to other parts of the nation.

“This is as a result of our finding that certain communities in Ghana do not tolerate persons with albinism, neither do they allow them to live in the communities.

These communities are not welcoming to persons with albinism because of their cultural practices and beliefs. So, we have thought it wise to dialogue with the traditional leaders of the communities to fashion out how to amend some of their cultural practices and beliefs,” Katseku said.

The initiative is supported by the Open Society Initiative for West Africa, a West African organization that promotes democratic values.

A public gathering in a community in Ghana to seek support for Albinos.
Photo: Africa Feeds Media

Source: Harsh weather conditions killing albinos in Ghana

South Africa: dead man’s ‘missing private parts’ spark riot

The article presented below does not represent a firm case of a ritual killing – or muti murder, as these crimes are called in southern Africa – but illustrates the daily fear of residents of countries in the region and the reaction of the population when suspecting another case of muti murder in their neighborhood.
Mob justice means that the rule of law is absent. Governments must protect its citizens and punish perpetrators of heinous crimes like muti murders. People have a right to live without fear.
For his reason, the article has been included here (webmaster FVDK).

One of the three houses which were torched by residents on the witchhunt for suspects following the suspicious death of a local.  Image: ANTONIO MUCHAVE

Published: August 14, 2019
By: Peter Ramothwala  

The death of a man has sparked a vigilante attack after his family members found he had body parts missing.

James Makhubele, 69, from Blinkwater village outside Giyani in Limpopo, was meant to be laid to rest on Sunday, but his family were shocked to discover his private parts were missing during a body viewing.

Makhubele was believed to have died in an apparent hit and run. But his family claimed he was killed and his body thrown on to the road to look like he was hit by a car.

Enraged community members, who were at the funeral, torched three houses belonging to three people they suspected of killing him and cutting the deceased’s body parts.

According to relatives, Makhubele’s body had deep cuts on the thighs and had his penis cut off.

Police spokesperson Col Moatshe Ngoepe said investigations have been broadened and a second postmortem would be conducted.Ngoepe confirmed the family had registered a complaint, regarding missing body parts of the deceased.

Makhubele’s niece Sophie Maluleke, 42, said her uncle was last seen at family gathering on August 3 when he retired for the night.

“When we got home we found that he wasn’t there. While we were still worried about where he could have went, somebody came to inform us that my uncle was hit by a car and he is dead,” Maluleke said.”We found him dripping blood from his pants, but his trousers were still intact.

Sophie Maluleke ,43, R, and Tsakane Baloyi. PHOTO: ANTONIO MUCHAVE/SOWETAN

“We didn’t check what caused the bleeding because we immediately called the police to the scene,” she said.

The family could not see Makhubele’s body for a week at the government mortuary in Elim because of a service delivery protest.

She said on Sunday during the funeral, rumour swirled that her uncle may have been a victim of ritual killings.

“Two men from the community volunteered to inspect the entire body during the funeral proceeding and found his private parts missing.”The deceased’s brother Rexon said they immediately called off the funeral and called the police to do further investigation.

“We were shocked. What they did to my brother is inhumane and I want whoever did this to pay.”We had already spent R20,000 for funeral costs. We had no choice, but to allow the mourners to feast,” he said.

RIP

Source: Dead man’s ‘missing private parts’ spark riot

Related articles: 

Deceased’s missing penis sparks rampage in which angry Limpopo mourners torch 3 houses

Published: August 14, 2019
By: Staff Reported (News 24)

Mourners at a funeral of a 69-year-old man in Blinkwater village outside Giyani in Limpopo went on a rampage on Sunday when they discovered that his private parts were missing, Sowetan reported. 

James Makhubele was reportedly believed to have died in a hit-and-run on August 3, but family members now believe he was the victim of a ritual killing and that his body was thrown on to the road to create the appearance that he had been hit by a car. 

At the funeral, family members inspected Makhubele’s remains and reportedly discovered that body parts were missing. 

This sparked a vigilante attack during which mourners burnt down three houses, one belonging to a man whom they believe to be the suspect and those of two of his employees. 

According to Sowetan, police spokesperson Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe said a second post-mortem would be conducted. 

However, a policeman at the local police station reportedly told the newspaper that the first post-mortem did not find that any body parts had been removed. 

Incidents of mob justice continue to flare up throughout the country. 

Last week, News24 reported that two men estimated to be around 30 years old were murdered by groups of people in separate vigilante attacks in the Eastern Cape.

In July, 14 people were arrested in Hammanskraal, north of Pretoria, for stoning a murder suspect to death.

In the same week, two women were stripped naked and set alight in the Ha-Mashau village in Limpopo. They were suspected of murdering a 12-year-old boy. Two suspects, aged 16 and 17, have been arrested.

and:

Alleged ritual motivated killing sparks violence in Giyani, Limpopo (tv news broadcast – YouTube)

Blinkwater village outside Giyani in Limpopo, South Africa

Nigeria: mutilated dead body found near army checkpoint in Aba (Abia State)

Warning: the article below contains gruesome details of the death of the unknown victim whereas the original article (see Source) contains a graphic photo of the deceased. (webmaster FVDK).  

The mutilated body of the victim

Published: May 23, 2019
By: Ngozi Onwukwe (AbaCityBlog)  

A mutilated dead body of a yet to be identified young man was found on Wednesday morning at the popular Bata Junction, in Aba Abia State.

The body which was found just adjacent of an army checkpoint at Bata Junction has sent residents into deep panic of the presence of ritual killers in town.

The yet to be identified victim on a closer look should be in his late 20s or early 30s before he met his untimely death.His dead body has badly mutilated as he had his intestines chartered and some important parts of his body like private part and heart were also removed by his killers.

Residents said the time of the incident is not known to them, but majority agreed it could be in the wee hours of Wednesday as the body was still fresh as at when we visited the scene.

They said the killing and mutilation of the deceased body has brought more panic to them especially those of them residing around the crime prone Ogbor-Hill axis that links the Bata Junction to Aba main town.

“The way the body was dumped with his private part and heart cut off sends message that ritualists are in town. We are in serious trouble if ritual killers are in this town.

“Everybody is afraid about the problems we have been having with tricycle robbers now that they have started killing and cutting out human parts, we are in deeper trouble,” one of the residents said.

Anyawu Emeka, a Keke riders said, “The issue looks more like money ritual because the place they dumped his body is strategic in this town.

“Bata Junction is like a confluence in Aba because almost everyone entering the main town must pass through here. Honestly, Aba is sinking security wise.”

It was gathered from some residents and commuters that the matter was reported to the nearest police station to the incident, the Eziama Police Division for further actions very early in the morning.

It was also gathered from the residents that officials of the Aba South LGA Environmental Health Department which as gathered has jurisdiction of the area have been informed to come and evacuate of the dead body for evacuation.

“It’s under our jurisdiction. We are aware of it. I’ve been there to observe the place and the deceased is not even a mad person. It’s not an elderly. It’s a young man.

“I don’t know what really happened there. It police will carry out their investigation and also we expect that through media, the family members might be reached to come.

“If it is is there till tomorrow morning, we’ll handle it. Nobody has identified the corpse for now. We cannot allow it to be a public nuisance. We cannot allow it to decompose there. We’ll handle it by tomorrow if nobody comes in for it today,” she said.

When contacted, SP Geoffrey Ogbonna, the Public Relations Officer of Abia State Police Command said he is not aware of the incident as he has not been briefed about it.

Source: Mutilated dead body found near army checkpoint in Aba

Related article: Abia CP vows to investigate suspected ritual killing in Aba
Published: May 22, 2019
By: The Eagle Online 

Police Commissioner in Abia, Ene Okon, has vowed to unravel culprits involved in the murder and removal of the body parts of a young man in Aba on Tuesday night.
Okon made the vow in a phone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Aba on Wednesday.
He said: “The information I heard was that the man was a mentally deranged person but the removal of his parts is what I do not understand.
“If they are now removing the body parts of lunatics for rituals, that is adding another dimension to criminality which is very strange and which Operation Puff Adder will work towards that area.
“Rest assured that we will investigate that murder because although the report I heard was that the man was a lunatic, even a lunatic cannot just die like that so we are going to investigate it.”
The sighting of the young man’s lifeless body with heart and private part removed threw Aba residents into panic Wednesday as they suspected the style of murder signaled the return of ritual killers to Aba.
The body of the yet-to-be identified young man was discovered early in the morning by traders going to the market and was dumped at Bata Junction faced down.
The young man, who should be in his early 30s, had his intestines pulled out from the belly and some other parts missing in the style, residents said, was akin to ritual killing.
A source, who refused to be named, said the killing of the young man with his traveling bag beside him may have happened in the late hours of Tuesday or early hours of Wednesday.
The source said: “I tell you, this kind of killing which showed the parts of this young man harvested, has caused me to shiver and fear because if this kind of thing is to return to Aba, then we are in big trouble.
“Who will chase after them? Who can stop them?
“Robbers have been robbing and killing people with tricycles even near police and military checkpoints and nothing has happened, tell me how can we be safe in this city with ritualists?”
Emeka Anyawu, a tricycle riders said: “The issue looks more like money ritual because the place they dumped his body is strategic in this town.
“Bata Junction is like a confluence in Aba because almost everyone entering the main town must pass through here. Honestly, Aba is sinking, security wise.”
NAN learnt that the matter was reported to the nearest police station which is Eziama Police station and also the Aba South Environmental Health department in the morning.
However, the corpse remained at the center of the junction till late Wednesday although it had been covered with cellophane material.
When contacted, the Head of Department, Environmental Health, Aba South LGA,  Onyinyechi Nwigwe said she had inspected the corpse but cannot order removal because it required police approval.
Nwigwe also stated that if no member of the victim’s family showed up to evacuate his body, the health office would then do their work.
She said: “It is under our jurisdiction; we are aware of it; I have been there to observe the place and the deceased is not even a mad person; he is a young man.
“I don’t know what really happened there. It is the police that will carry out investigation and we expect that through the media, the family members might be reached.
“If it remains there till tomorrow morning, we will handle it. Nobody has identified the corpse for now.
“We cannot allow it to become a public nuisance. We cannot allow it to decompose there. We’ll handle it by tomorrow if nobody comes in for it today.”

Source: Abia CP vows to investigate suspected ritual killing in Aba

Abia State – Nigeria 

Sierra Leone: Albinism Awareness Day celebrations

This posting is NOT about ritual killings of people with albinism in Sierra Leone. It contains a public lecture by Rashid Dumbuya on the occasion of Albinism Awareness Day celebrations in this West Africa Country. However, also in Sierra Leone people with albinism face discrimination and barriers that limit their full participation in society on an equal basis with others.

In Sierra Leone, people with albinism are considered people with disabilities. Rashid Dumbuya concludes his public lecture with a number of recommendations to improve the position of people with albinism in Sierra Leone. (webmaster FVDK)

The picture presented here is not related to the article  below on people living with albinism in Sierra Leone

Published: June 19, 2019
By: The Patriotic Vanguard (Sierra Leone)

Albinism Awareness Day Celebrations in Sierra Leone

Public lecture by Rashid Dumbuya Esq

Them: Still standing strong; realizing the rights of Persons with Albinism in Sierra Leone.

General introduction

Due to the immense challenges that were being faced by persons with albinism coupled with the increased momentum and outcry for their protection across the world, the United Nations Human Rights Council adopted a resolution in 2013 (A/HRC/RES/23/13) calling for the prevention of attacks and discrimination against persons with albinism around the world.

Consequently, on the 18th December 2014, the United Nations General Assembly heeded to the call and adopted Resolution 69/170 proclaiming 13th June as International Albinism Awareness Day.

Following this Resolution, the UN Human Rights Council on the 26 of March 2015 in resolution 28/6 established the mandate of the Independent Expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism.

The work of the Independent Expert among many other things as provided in its mandate is to engage in dialogue and consult with States and other relevant stakeholders; to identify, exchange and promote good practices relating to the realization of the rights of persons with albinism and their participation as equal members of society; to promote and report on developments, challenges and obstacles relating to the realization of the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism and to make recommendations in that regard to the Human Rights Council.

On 3 July 2015, the Human Rights Council appointed Ms. Ero of Nigeria as the first mandate holder and Independent Expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism.

She assumed her duties on 1st August 2015 and in January 2016, she submitted her first report on Albinism to the UN Human Rights Council.

STILL STANDING STRONG has been chosen as the international theme for this year’s International Albinism Awareness Day Celebrations.

The theme is a call to recognize, celebrate and stand in solidarity with persons with Albinism around the world, to support their cause, their accomplishments as well as their challenges and to promote and protect their fundamental human rights.

LEGAL LINK is therefore proud to have associated and collaborated with the Sierra Leone Association of Persons with Albinism in commemorating this historic and symbolic day here today in Sierra Leone.

But why does the UN mark international days like this?

International days have been embraced by the UN because it affords an occasion to educate the world on issues of concern, to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems; and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity.

They also serve as powerful advocacy tool to draw attention and make strong case for reforms.

What is Albinism?

Albinism is a rare, non-contagious, genetically inherited condition that affects people worldwide regardless of ethnicity or gender.

It results from a significant deficit in the production of melanin and is characterized by the partial or complete absence of pigment in the skin, hair and eyes. In order for a person to be affected by albinism, both parents must carry the gene and, in that case, there is a 25per cent chance that a child will be born with albinism at each pregnancy.

What are the prevailing statistics on Albinism across the world?

The proportion of persons affected by albinism in the world differs from region to region.

In North America and Europe, it is estimated that 1 in 17,000 to 20,000 people are affected by the condition, while in sub-Saharan Africa,1 in 5,000 to 15,000 could be affected, with specific countries having a much higher tendency, including estimated rates of 1 in 1,400, and about 1 in 20 persons in the general population carrying the gene for albinism.

Other studies suggest that in specific groups in Panama or in the Pacific region, the rate of people affected could be as high as 1 in 70 to 1 in 125.13.

However, in Sierra Leone, a report done by OSIWA in 2018 puts the statistics at a little over 500 people affected by albinism.

What are the different types of albinism?

Albinism is of different types. The most common and visible type is oculocutaneous albinism (OCA), which affects the skin, the hair and the eyes.

Within this type, there are subtypes, which reflect varying degrees of melanin pigment deficiency in an individual.

The main subtypes of OCA are tyrosinase negative albinism (OCA1) and tyrosinase positive albinism (OCA2).

In OCA1, there is little or no production of melanin and it is often characterized by white hair and opaque or transparent irises.

In OCA2, which is more prevalent particularly in African countries, some melanin is produced and it is characterized by yellow-blonde or sandy-coloured hair and grey to light brown irises.

A less common form of albinism is ocular albinism which affects the eyes alone, while albinism accompanied by Hermansky-Pudlak syndromeis is another less common form, which is characterized by bleeding disorders, bowel (colitis) and lung diseases.

*What are the legal frameworks protecting the rights of persons with albinism?*

At the International level: 

  • Universal Declaration of Human Rights
  • International Covenant on Civil and Political RightsUnited Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
  • Independent Expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism.

All of the above international frameworks promotes equality and non-discrimination.

At the African regional level:

  • The African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights
  • The Regional Action Plan on Albinism in Africa
  • Resolution by the Pan African Parliament to facilitate the investigation and prosecution of perpetrators of attacks on persons with Albinism

At the domestic level:

  • The 1991 Constitution of Sierra Leone – (talks about protection from discrimination)
  • The Sierra Leone Disability Act of 2011.- (classify them generally as PWD’s)
  • The National Commission for Persons with Disabilities
  • The Human Rights Commission of Sierra Leone -(promote and protect their rights)
  • Sierra Leone Association for persons with Albinism- (umbrella body in SL)

Challenges and areas of concern

Persons with albinism face discrimination and barriers that restrict their participation in society on an equal basis with others every day.

Due to those many challenges, persons with albinism throughout the world are unable to enjoy the full range of human rights and the same standards of equality, rights and dignity as others.

While some of those challenges are global, others have predominantly been identified in certain regions.

In the Independent Expert’s report of 2016, some of the challenges identified include human rights violations such as attacks, desecration of graves, trafficking of body parts, displacement, discrimination against persons with albinism, as well as human rights violations based on disabilities, deprivation of the right to the highest attainable standard of health and the right to education.

1. Witchcraft and related offences

It has been widely reported and documented that persons with albinism are hunted and physically attacked due to prevailing myths such as the misbelief that their body parts, when used in witchcraft rituals and potions or amulets, will induce wealth, good luck and political success.

Other dangerous myths that facilitate the perpetration of attacks are those linked to perceptions of their appearance, including misbeliefs and myths that persons with albinism are not human beings, but ghosts, that they are subhuman and that they do not die, but disappear.

An increase of those attacks, referred to as “ritual attacks”, has been reported by to have been high in Africa especially during periods of political elections.

2. Brutal and deadly nature of the Attacks on PWA’s

In Africa, it is reported that, attacks directed at persons with albinism are usually carried out with machetes, resulting in severe mutilation or death.

In most cases, the persons attacked are dismembered; body parts such as fingers, arms, legs, eyes, genitals, skin, bones, the head and hair have been severed from the body and taken. In several of those cases, body parts have been hacked off while the person was alive.

Reportedly, there is a corollary witchcraft belief that it is preferable to harvest body parts from live victims because screams increase the potency of the potion for which the parts are used.

Since 2007, civil society organizations have reported hundreds of attacks against persons with albinism in 25 countries.

All of those physical attacks appear to be, at least in part, related to the erroneous beliefs and myths linked to witchcraft practices.

3. Lucrative Trade and markets for the body parts of persons with albinism.*

It has been reported that there is a market for body parts of persons with albinism. The body parts are reportedly sold both locally and across borders.

The prices of body parts reportedly range from $2,000 for a limb to $75,000 for a “complete set” or a corpse. Civil society reports indicate that, motivated by those prices, family members and communities have sold, or attempted to sell, persons with albinism, thereby fuelling the supply side of this macabre trade.

Recent cases of body-parts trafficking that were brought to the attention of the Independent Expert by civil society include cases where law enforcement agencies acted promptly and were able to prevent the sale and save the persons with albinism involved.

In a few other cases, however, the body parts were harvested and have still not been recovered.

4. Forced migration

Attacks against persons with albinism in some areas have caused hundreds of persons, particularly women and children, to flee their homes and seek refuge in temporary shelters.

Most of these shelters were neither designed nor prepared for an influx of persons with albinism, and are also not equipped to address the special needs of persons with albinism. Reports show that inhabitants with albinism are exposed to early skin cancer risk and various forms of abuse.

5. Discrimination and stigmatization

One of the main barriers to the implementation of the human rights of persons with albinism is discrimination and stigmatization, both of which are historically and culturally entrenched. Information on discrimination against persons with albinism is a common reality around the world. However, the expression and severity of the discrimination faced by persons with albinism vary from region to region.

In sub Saharan Africa in particular, bullying of school-age children owing to their appearance is on the increase.

Also, discrimination takes more extreme forms, including infanticide, physical threats and attacks.

Lack of information on the condition facilitates the spread of myths to explain albinism, most of which are erroneous and in some cases dangerous, including myths that people with albinism are ghosts or the result of conception during menstruation or the result of a general curse.

Challenges faced by persons with albinism in Sierra Leone

Though not severe and deadly like those encountered in East and Southern parts of Africa, Persons with Albinism (PWA) in Sierra Leone also face huge challenges in the realization of their rights.

Firstly, they have been largely excluded and sometimes forgotten by government, civil society, donors and development partners in the democratic and governance agenda of the country. Issues affecting them have generally gone unnoticed and has resulted to deep engraved stigma, exclusion, discrimination and sometimes violence against them.

Furthermore, they have little or no voice compared to other marginalized groups such as persons with disabilities, children and women.

Also, there is little activism on the part of civil society as well people living with the condition to advocate for the promotion and protection of their rights and wellbeing which may be a consequence of lack of knowledge and understanding and/or interest.

Other challenges include access to justice, education, health, employment and even political representation in the democratic governance architecture of the country.

More negative still, the lack of effective, functional and genuine bodies, organizations or CSO’s in Sierra Leone to help advocate on the rights of PWA’s has also left them vulnerable to exploitation by unscrupulous persons and organizations.

Finally, the challenges encountered by Persons with Albinism in Sierra Leone could be best summarized in the words of the Founder and Executive Director of Sierra Leone Association for Persons with Albinism, Mohamed Osman Kamara aka Jay Marvel, as posted on their Facebook page.

*‘’We Demand Action to be taken Now! We Crying Since Yesterday Night…… About the Demise Of Mahid Jalloh, Who Was Also Admitted At Connaught For Skin Cancer With The Late Ruth. He Was Transfered To The Shepherd Hospital At Tombo. There He Passed Away On The 23rd At Around 12:00pm. We Are Calling On the Sierra Leone Government, And All Organizations Around the World… Skin Cancer Is Killing Us. These Are Just The Two ( 2) Known Cases.. Who Knows How Many Persons With Albinism Are Dying From Skin Cancer In The Country? , Because We Lack Proper Health Care. This is a Serious National Issue. Every Citizen Should Be Concerned and Try in His or Her Own Way.!!! Ministry Of Health, National Commission For Persons With Disability, Ministry Of Social Welfare Children and Gender Affairs etc YOU SHOULD TAKE THE LEAD IN THIS CASE! Rest In Peace Our Beloved Brother! We Love You Both and Pray the Government Puts An End To Skin Cancer Affecting Persons With Albinism In Sierra Leone.!’’*

Recommendations

From the above points raised, it stands to reason that human right abuses and violations of the rights of persons with albinism is still commonplace in Sierra Leone.

*LEGAL LINK* therefore joins the Sierra Leone Association for Persons with Albinism in calling on the government of Sierra Leone to adopt and implement the Regional Action Plan on Albinism in Africa as well as the newly adopted resolution by the Pan African Parliament to facilitate the investigation and prosecution of perpetrators of attacks on persons with albinism and further ensure effective education and awareness training on the human rights of people with albinism.
Also, we call on the government and Parliament of the Republic of Sierra Leone to pass a specific law that will adequately protect the rights of albinism in the country.

Furthermore, we call on the government to ensure that victims and members of their families have access to appropriate remedies.

More significantly, we call on the government, the human rights commission, the National Commission for persons with disabilities and other civil societies organizations with human rights mandate to increase education and public awareness-raising activities on the rights of persons with albinism so as to deconstruct stereotypes and existing myths.

We further call on government to ensure that PWA’s are not discriminated in schools and are provided with scholarship support to pursue their education to the highest of levels. Free healthcare for PWA’s must also be guaranteed so as to help address the problem of skin cancer.

The Government of Sierra Leone should also ensure that PWA’s are included in the three arms of government as well as the public service and other sectors crucial for the running of the affairs of the state. This will help to de- mystify myths and erroneous beliefs about PWA’s not being human.

Finally, inclusion of information on the situation of persons with albinism in reports submitted by the Government of Sierra Leone to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights under article 62 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights and also to the UN Human Rights Council under the UPR, is good practice in the protecting and promoting of the rights of persons with albinism.

Conclusion

Persons with Albinism have faced and continue to face, ongoing hurdles and challenges that seriously undermine their enjoyment of fundamental human rights in Sierra Leone and the world at large. From stigma and discrimination, to barriers of access to health and education as well as marginalization from socio-political and democratic institutions in the country.

In addition, PWA’s have also become subjects of attacks for ritual killings and political power in many parts of Africa.

But despite all of these challenges, PWA’S have remained undaunted and are STILL STNDING STRONG!
WE CAN DO BETTER FOR THEM BY ACCEPTING THEM AS HUMAN BEINGS THAT DESERVES TO LIVE, ENJOY EQUAL RIGHTS, DIGNITY AND RESPECT WITH US!

Thank You

Rashid Dumbuya ESQ

Executive Director – LEGAL LEGAL LINK

Christian Lawyers Centre (a.k.a LEGAL LINK) is registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission of Sierra Leone as a non-profit legal advocacy group comprising of lawyers, law students and human right activists that seeks to provide legal assistance to religious communities and vulnerable groups in Sierra Leone through legal advocacy, public interest litigations, state and private sector accountability, enforcement of the rule of law and respect for domestic and international laws that guarantee fundamental human rights and freedoms.

Source: Sierra Leone: Albinism Awareness Day celebrations

South Africa: Another ritual murder?

I should emphasize that the case below concerns a suspected case of ritual killing, for muti purposes, as the article outlines. We must always be very careful in not exaggerating the issue of ritualistic killings and stick to the facts. However, muti murders are not uncommon in South Africa (and neighboring countries) and hence, the concerns and reactions of the population are sincere. Moreover, this was not the first alleged ritual killing in the region.

As stated before, governments must protects their citizens and punish the perpetrators of these heinous crimes after their guilt has been established by an independent court. (webmaster FVDK)

Published: June 2, 2019
By: Kaizer Nengovhela (Zoutnet)

Life at Ravele and surrounding areas in the Sinthumule area came to a standstill last Wednesday, following the discovery of the body of a young girl in a bush at Tshikhwani village.

Some body parts were alleged to be missing from the body, which adds to the suspicion that she was killed for muti purposes. Many questions are being asked as to who is behind the senseless and barbaric killings as this was not the first alleged ritual killing.

The girl was later identified as Mamaila Ngobeni (13), a Grade 6 pupil at Daniel Mubva Primary School. Her body was discovered by a passer-by, who alerted the community.

The young girl went missing on Sunday, 19 May. The body, when it was found, allegedly had multiple wounds and both her ears were missing.

The discovery of the body has also raised fears that an organized syndicate dealing in body parts is operating in the area. Residents say other unexplainable deaths occurred in the village, which they believe are the work of this syndicate.

Mr Elias Ngobeni, father of the deceased, said that they were not happy about the way in which the police were handling the case. He acknowledged that some parts were missing from his daughter’s body. He said that they were still waiting for the police to supply them with the autopsy report.

A community member, who commented on condition of anonymity, said that within a short space of time residents from around the village and surrounding villages had gathered at the scene to catch a glimpse of the body. He mentioned that people no longer felt safe in their own homes. “If you do not see one of your children for two to three hours, you start to wonder whether the child is still alive or not,” another resident said.

Chief Mbulaheni Ramabulana said that they were perturbed by the increasing crime in the area. “We have a duty as a community to see to it that crime disappears in our community. We have to devise means to stop this scourge,” he said.

He said the community should “help the police with information that can lead to the arrest and successful prosecution of the suspects who are responsible for this murder”. He appealed to the community to leave the school children alone to go to school.

“Fighting crime is not the duty of the police alone, but a collective task of both the police and you as the community. If you want to see police making a breakthrough in this case, give them information,” he said.

The spokesperson for the SAPS in Limpopo, Col Moatshe Ngoepe, said that the police were still waiting for the post-mortem report. “At this stage, we have no evidence linking anybody to her death. We are now appealing to members of the public to give us space to work on the case.” He also appealed to members of the community to supply information that can shed light on the incident.

The poor family do not have money to bury their beloved daughter because they rely on pension funds and they want to bury her on Sunday. Those who want to help can call Cllr Matodzi Ramushavha on 063 699 6321.

Source: Another ritual murder?

Limpopo Province in South Africa

Ghana – Volta Simon Kope: ritual murder case takes new twist

Published: June 2, 2019
By: Freeman KORYEKPOR AWLESU (Modern Ghana newspaper)

The two biological parents,Madam Etornam Magic and Mr Mawuli Ladzedo of a four-year-old pupil, Mawufeasi Ladzedo who was murdered by unknown assailants at Simon Kope, a fishing and farming community in the over bank at the Tongor-Dzemeni in the South Dayi District of the Volta Region have made a shocking revelation.

According to the two, they were surprised not to be allowed to see the dead body of their son before the elders including the chief and Queen of the area, Togbe Havor and Mama Adokuwaa have ordered for the burial of their son on Tuesday May 28,2019 without making any official report to the Donkorkrom District Police Command. 

Madam Etornam Magic and Mr Mawuli Ladzedo disclosed that they were only informed by the elders, Togbe Havor and Mama Adokuwaa that the Asafo groups discovered the dead body of Mawufeasi Ladzedo which they said was buried under the demaged fishing canoe along the black Volta lake on Tuesday May 28, 2019. 

They stated that they were told that Mawufeasi Ladzedo’s forehead was smatched and parts of his body bruised and bloodied including his tongue was cut off from his mouth. 

“And also, we were told that the skin of his lower-left leg was reportedly flayed, or peeled off, and his nostrils and an armpit dripping with blood when the body was discovered by a couple of his neighbors and Asafo groups of both Simon and Havor communities,” Madam Etornam Magic and Mr Mawuli Ladzedo further detailed. 

According to them, they were also warned by the chief and elders including the queen mother not to make further comment on the murder of their son to either media or individuals including the police for which “we obliged until recently the matter has gone viral on the media platforms.” 

Madam Etornam Magic and Mawuli Ladzedo who are the natives from the Battor Traditional Area in the North Tongu District of the Volta Region made above sterling revelations while the both speaking on Battor-Aveyime based local radio station, Klenam FMon Friday May 31,2019 being monitored by Today. 

Their revelations followed when Today broke out the news in its Friday May 31,2019 edition of the murder of Mawufeasi Ladzedo which happened on Tuesday May 28, 2019. 

Today reported that the boy got missing on Sunday May 26,2019 when he was dressed up by his mother, Madam Etornam Magic and asked to follow his colleagues to go the church service at the Simon Village branch of Divine Healing Church. But the boy did not returned home after the closed of the church,Today report has confirmed . 

Today report indicated that the dead body of Mawufeasi Ledzedo who got missing on Sunday May 26, 2019 was found buried under the demaged fishing canoe along the black Volta lake on Tuesday May 28, 2019, while his body parts including his tongue were missing. 

When contacted Togbe Havor and Queen-mother of the area to respond to the new development emerging about the murder of the boy the two admitted to have ordered for the burial of the deceased, confirming that the two parents of the deceased, Mr Mawuli Ladzedo and Etornam Magic were not presence. 

But they stated that the biological father of the father of the late Mawufeasi Ladzedo and some relatives were there before they burried the deceased. 

Meanwhile, an earlier report had, curiously, suggested the incident to have been foul play, although we had also learned that the corpse of the deceased showed signs symptomatic of a ritual murder of some sort; for the scrotum of the dead man was reported to be bruised and bloodied. 

Further information gathered by Today indicates that the mystery surrounding the murder of the boy is that the wee farmers in area lured the boy to kill and allegedly drained blood from his body to perform rituals, ostensibly to pacify their wee farms to help them to grow more wee products. 

Today gathered that Mawufeasi Ladzedo was not the only person who was murdered gruesomely in the area during this year 

Th situation of killing innocent individuals particularly the children for ritual purposes Today discovered is becoming alarming especially during every May and June, which are wee growing seasons in the area.

Source: Volta Simon Kope: Ritual Murder Case Takes New Twist

The South Dayi District of the Volta Region (eastern Ghana)