Ghanaian official: “Stop ritual killing of innocent children on the basis of witchcraft accusation.”

A Ghanaian official, the Oti Regional Director of Gender Department Esther Hammond, called on traditional and religious leaders to help stop child marriage and harmful cultural practices such as “ritual killing of innocent children on the basis of witchcraft accusation.” Her plea came during a consultative meeting held at Kpassa, in Nkwanta North District of the Oti Region, a newly created region, in December 2018, carved out of the northern part of the Volta Region.

The meeting was organized by the Oti Re­gional Department of Gender, in collaboration with the Oti Regional Coordinating Council, and funded by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). Its objective was to to tackle early child mar­riage and other harmful cultural practices that impede the develop­ment of the area.

The fate of children in Ghana – as of those in other countries – who are accused of witchcraft is saddening. It leads to their exclusion, to discrimination, and other harmful practices including death. It should be stopped. I wish to thank Mrs Hammond for raising her voice against these outdated and cruel practices.
(FVDK).

Stakeholders discuss child marriage, harmful cultural practice in Nkwanta area

Published: June 11, 2024
By: Times reporter – Ghanaian Times

A consultative meeting has been held at Kpassa, in Nkwanta North District of the Oti Region, on Tuesday, to tackle early child mar­riage and other harmful cultural practices that impede the develop­ment of the area.

The meeting sought to raise awareness about negative ef­fects of child marriage, deepen stakeholders’ understanding of the issues, and equip community leaders with knowledge and skills needed to advocate policy changes and local interventions.

It was organised by the Oti Re­gional Department of Gender, in collaboration with the Oti Regional Coordinating Council, and funded by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFP).

The event was attended by he Oti Re­gional Department of Gender, in collaboration with the Oti Regional Coordinating Council, and funded by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFP). among others.

The meeting was held against the backdrop of the 2023 Ghana Statistical Service Report that showed that in the Nkwanta North District, 1,014 children aged 12 to 17 years had ever been in union, with 43.0 per cent being boys and 57.0 per cent being girls.

The report indicates that such early unions often led to poor health outcomes, increased risks of maternal and child mortality, disrupted education, entrenched poverty and gender inequality.

The Oti Regional Director of Gender Department, Esther Hammond, said despite global and national efforts to eliminate harm­ful unsafe practices, it remained a significant challenge, particularly impacting the lives of young girls.

She noted that child marriage was denying adolescent girls and boys education and apprentice­ship, resulting in deprivation and poverty.

Ms Hammond appealed to parents and guardians to desist from forcing their girls into early marriage, and rather support them to pursue education.

She called on traditional and religious leaders to help stop child marriage and harmful cultural practices such as “ritual killing of innocent children on the basis of witchcraft accusation.”

The Oti Regional Director of Social Welfare, Innocent Komla Agblosu, advised parents to seek the welfare of their children and give them proper training, to be­come responsible citizens.

He urged children to study hard, obedient and responsibilities, “because rights goes with respon­sibilities”.

The Nkwanta North District Chief Executive, William Nawugo­na, in a speech read on his behalf, gave the assurance that the assem­bly would collaborate with other stakeholders to tackle issues of child marriage and harmful cultural practices.

The District Public Health Nurse, Erasmus Awlime, sensitised the participants to health dangers of child marriage and teenage pregnancy.

The Nkwanta District Police Commander, Chief Superinten­dent of Police, Henry Ayisi Men­sah, cautioned community leaders against handling crime, especially defilement, rape, and encouraged that such cases should be prompt­ly reported to the police for the necessary action.

Source: Stakeholders discuss child marriage, harmful cultural practice in Nkwanta area

Also read:

Gender Ministry Engages Stakeholders to End Child Marriage in Nkwanta North

Source: Oti Regional Co-ordinating Council
Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Republic of Ghana

South Africa: superstition in Vhembe District, Limpopo Province – ‘vampire’ who attacks old lady killed by angry mob

Warning: the following story and accompanying photo may upset people because of their graphic nature (FVDK).

I post the following article ‘as it is‘: I have virtually no comments – neither do I confirm the truthfulness of the incident reported nor do I present or suggest my belief in the superstition which forms the base and background of the alleged act, bizarre as it is.

Interesting though (and justifying its inclusion on this site) is the reference to a 2015 study of ritual murders in Vhembe, South Africa. Vhembe is situated in the Northern part of Limpopo Province, sharing borders with Zimbabwe in the north, Mozambique through Kruger National Park in the east and Botswana in the north west. Limpopo Province is notoriously known for its ritualistic murders and superstition.

Map of Limpopo Province with municipalities and districts. Source: Map of municipalities in Limpopo

Reportedly, Dr Alunamutwe Enos Randitsheni wrote a thesis on ritual murders – ‘muti’ murders – while doing his PhD at the University of Venda, and actually said that evil people who believed in such weird practices, such as sucking out someone’s blood, did in fact exist. (italics added by the webmaster FVDK).

“They don’t only exist in Vhembe, but they exist all over the world, and most of them perform these rituals for various reasons but mostly for personal gains,” Dr Dr Alunamutwe Enos Randitsheni alleged, adding that the Tshivenda name for such people was madzhavhathu (cannibals). According to Dr Alunamutwe Enos Randitsheni, most victims are women, children, and people living with albinism.
(FVDK)

‘Vampire’ who attacks old lady killed by angry mob

Published: June 7, 2024
By: Zoutnet, South Africa

A wave of fear and panic has gripped Vhembe District as reports of alleged vampire attacks have surfaced, leading to tragic and violent responses from local communities. In a recent shocking incident, a man accused of being a vampire was beaten to death and burnt by residents of Shikunduville in the Saselamani area.

The tragedy unfolded on Sunday, 26 May, when a man, after reportedly biting an elderly woman on the mouth in Shikunduville, was accused of being a vampire. The woman’s screams for help drew the attention of other members of the community, who rushed to her aid. In their attempt to rescue the victim, the crowd turned their fury on the alleged attacker.

Despite their assault, the man continued his attack, displaying unusual resistance to the beating. The escalating violence culminated in the community’s beating him to death and subsequently burning his body. The traumatic event has left the residents of Shikunduville deeply unsettled and fearful.

The chairperson of the SANCO branch in Saselamani B, Mr Solomon Mathonsi, said the community was still living in fear. “I was at church that Sunday, so I did not see the incident as it unfolded. I was told that the deceased, who worked at a local farm, was going to send money to his family in Mozambique when he started fighting with one of his relatives. He ran away and tried to get inside a neighbour’s house, and a dog attacked him, which forced him to run to another neighbour. He allegedly threatened her that he would bite her and rape her. He attacked her severely, injuring her face, and she looks scary now. Her mouth looks like it is about to be removed, and she appears as if she was attacked by a vicious animal. When the mob was fighting against him, he was roaring like an animal. He looked like he was possessed by evil spirits. We are now left in fear, both young and old,” he said.

According to the police spokesperson in Vhembe, W/O Vuledzani Dathi, the police in Saselamani opened a murder docket after a 29-year-old man was allegedly killed by the community in Shikunduville. He confirmed that the man had been accused of attacking an elderly woman on Sunday, 26 May.

“The police went to house no. 401 in Shikunduville and found the owner, Mr Sam Maceke. The deceased was lying on the ground, wearing black shorts and a black T-shirt. He had injuries on the face and legs. He was tied up with a rope. Mr Maceke told the police that his mother, old lady Nwajaki Priscinah Chauke, was bitten on the mouth by an unknown male person.”

Dathi said the community members had assaulted the male person and tied him up with a rope. “He died at the scene of the crime. He was later identified as Surprise Maluleke of Maineville, a Mozambican with no passport or legal documents. He is said to have been born around 1995. He was taken to Tshilidzini Hospital’s Forensic Pathology department. No arrests have been made so far, and anyone who can assist the police in apprehending the culprits may contact the investigating officer, Sgt Gunguva, on 082 664 6843,” Dathi said.

A 30-second video of old lady Nwajaki Priscinah Chauke narrating how she was attacked started circulating on social media on Wednesday, 29 May. In the footage, Chauke, who can be seen sitting down, wearing a yellow ANC T-shirt and drinking water, said, “He did this to me because he was roaming around my yard. When I asked him what he was looking for, he quickly turned, pushed me, and got inside my house,” she said, speaking in Xitsonga.

The injured lady is currently recovering from her wounds at home.

The incident incited a lot of fear among community members in Vhembe, with many wondering whether creatures such as vampires really exist in Vhembe.

Dr Alunamutwe Enos Randitsheni, who based his thesis on ritual murders in Vhembe while he was doing his PhD at the University of Venda in 2015, said that, during his investigation, he had found that evil people who believed in such weird practices, such as sucking out someone’s blood, did in fact exist.

“They don’t only exist in Vhembe, but they exist all over the world, and most of them perform these rituals for various reasons but mostly for personal gains,” he said. He said the Tshivenda name for such people was madzhavhathu (cannibals).

He added that most of their victims were women, children, and people living with albinism.

The old lady, Nwajaki Priscinah Chauke, who was attacked by an alleged vampire at Shikunduville. 
Photo: Video screen shot.

Source: ‘Vampire’ who attacks old lady killed by angry mob

The plight of people with albinism in Zambia – a cry for protection and assistance

Zambia’s Eastern Province is notoriously known for its ritualistic murders. Allegedly, the country’s Eastern Province records the highest number of ritualistic murder cases.

I’ve posted earlier on the plight of people with albinism in Zambia and the attacks on and murder of innocent people in this remote province of Zambia. In 2019, within a short period of time, two murder cases were reported. In March the following year, another gruesome murder was committed in the Eastern Province. In Chipata, the mutilated body of the albino victim was discovered with tongue, eyes and arms missing. The Executive Director of the National Albinism Initiative Network of Zambia, Ruth Zulu, deplored the stigmatization, discrimination and murder of people and published a plea for a legal framework to address this nationwide problem. In vain. The murders continued as the article below painfully demonstrates.

Katerina Mildnerova, a Czech social and cultural anthropologist, and Antonio Costa, an independent photojournalist originally from Mozambique, are to be commended for their initiative.
Read more about their cry for help and protection of people living with albinism in Zambia below.
(FVDK)

The plight of people with albinism in Zambia – a cry for protection and assistance

Published: May 10, 2024
By: Znesnáze – Olomouc / Organizer: Nadační fond pomoci

In the middle of the night, there was a pounding on the door. “Open up, Zambian police!” I see four masked men. They broke into the house where I was sleeping with my children. They pointed guns at me and threatened me, “If you scream, we’ll kill you.” Two of them dragged me behind the house and held a gun to my head. Then I heard a terrible scream. “Mommy, mommy, they chopped my sister’s arm!” My son sobbed with tears. At that moment, those two men threw me to the ground and started to run away. I came into the room and saw my daughter in a pool of blood…” 

The brutal attack on little Jemimah took place in June 2021 in the Northern Province of Zambia. The two-year-old girl lost her right arm, which was chopped off by unknown attackers with a machete. This case has not yet been investigated by the Zambian police and none of the attackers have been persecuted and sentenced. Jamimah lives with other children with albinism in an orphanage in the capital Lusaka. In the same year two other nine-year-old boys were ritually attacked and mutilated. One lost his right arm, the other his fingers. 

These stories are just some of the many we encountered during our research in 2023. 

Since 2015, Zambia has faced an increasing number of abductions, mutilations and ritual killings of people with albinism, in most cases defenceless children. Their body parts are used for making magical objects that are supposed to provide their owners with wealth, power or prestige. While these murders are most often committed by family members of the victims while still in Zambia, body parts are smuggled through organised crime networks into neighbouring countries – Malawi, Tanzania and Mozambique. The largest number of ritual killings of albinos occur in the Eastern Province, the poorest region of Zambia. The victims of the attacks, if they manage to escape, continue to live in permanent fear for their lives, as the perpetrators are not prosecuted in the vast majority of cases. After an attack, children are placed in state orphanages, where they receive temporary protection, they are removed from their natural family environment and have to cut off contact with their parents and siblings. 

In addition to the threat to their safety, people with albinism face enormous health risks due to the lack of medication and protective equipment. Skin and eye cancer is the most common cause of their premature deaths. Albinos in Zambia live to an average age of only 40 years, 22 years less than the national average.

Most affected families live at or below the extreme poverty line. They cannot afford to provide education for their children because safety and health care must understandably take priority. Families lack the means to afford school supplies, school uniforms or even just the dioptric glasses necessary for reading and writing at school. Yet education is the ticket to a better future, without the daily fear for one’s survival. In Zambia, there is a belief that a child with albinism is the result of infidelity and the source of a family curse, which unfortunately often leads to the mother and child being abandoned by the father and the wider family. A single mother‘s status is inevitably linked to a life of poverty and it is very difficult for her to break this vicious cycle.

FUNDRAISING

Fundraising is ongoing via the crowdfunding platform Znesnaze21 from May to September 2024. It is aimed at purchasing direct material assistance for the most vulnerable families living below the extreme poverty line in the Eastern Province of Zambia (single mothers, children, victims of ritual attacks). The purchase and transportation of the material aid will be arranged by the organizer of the fundraiser in collaboration with the Butterfly Foundation of Zambia – a non-profit organization that has assisted the most adversely affected families with albinism in the Eastern Province of Zambia since 2017.

Our assistance targets three main areas: 

Security. Ensuring the protection of homes – security locks on doors, window bars and fencing 

Health. Prevention of skin cancer – sunscreen factor 50+, sunglasses, hats

Education. Basic school supplies – notebooks, stationery, uniforms and dioptric glasses

ABOUT THE BORN DIFFERENT PROJECT

Born Different is a project by the Czech anthropologist Katerina Mildnerova and the Mozambican photojournalist Antonio Cossa under the auspices of Palacky University in Olomouc. It is based on the creative linking of art and science, cultural anthropology and photography and draws on a series of team fieldworks in Zambia and Benin (2023-2024). It includes a travelling photographic exhibition, lectures and forthcoming popular science book.

Our primary aim is to raise public awareness about injustice, discrimination and human rights violations against people with albinism in Africa, particularly in Zambia. We want to stimulate a discussion about protecting the lives and rights of people with albinism in order to stop the violence and ritual killings that happen every day and which do not receive adequate attention. We are also endeavouring to help to improve their extremely difficult living conditions through public charitable fundraising efforts.

For more information, visit our website at www.borndifferent.upol.cz

(available from 17. 5. 2024)

ABOUT THE ORGANIZER

Katerina Mildnerova is Czech social and cultural anthropologist specializing in sub-Saharan Africa. She holds a PhD in ethnology from the University of West Bohemia in Pilsen. Since 2015 she has been working as a researcher and assistant professor at the Department of Sociology, Andragogy and Cultural Anthropology at Palacky University Olomouc. Since 2019 she is the president of the Czech Association of African Studies. She has conducted dozens of field researches in Zambia, Benin and Namibia and has lectured at several universities in Africa and Europe. She specializes in religious anthropology and medical anthropology. She is the author of dozens of academic articles and book chapters and five monographs of her own. She is co-author of the documentary film Black Czechs (2022) and founder of non-governmental organization Association for Support of Namibian Czechs. She is currently working on the project Born different with Antonio Cossa.

ANTONIO COSSA

An independent photojournalist originally from Mozambique, based in Prague. He has worked as a documentary photographer since 2004, collaborating with institutions such as the British Council and UNICEF. He has had a rich professional career focusing on war, refugee crisis and social issues. His work specializes in war conflicts in the Middle East and Africa, the refugee crisis on the Greek-Turkish border, documenting the situation of the Rohingya in Bangladesh and the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong. Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, he has been officially accredited by the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence as a war photojournalist. In recent years he has also photographed climate refugees in Mozambique after Cyclone Idai. His latest project focuses on albino survivors of ritual attacks in Zambia. He is also a portrait photographer and has photographed many of the world’s most famous people, including Nelson Mandela, the Dalai Lama, Vaclav Havel, 

His portfolio includes dozens of exhibitions around the world, lectures and workshops for students and the general public. Antonio Cossa is also a founder of the non-governmental organization Frontline Care whose main objective is to support victims of climate change and war refugees.

Source: ASSISTANCE TO PEOPLE WITH ALBINISM IN ZAMBIA!

Uganda: can increase in ritual murders be stopped by harsher punishment for murderers?

Perhaps it is time to debate whether there are situations that require the death penalty” – says Miriam Wangadya, chairperson Human Rights Commission Uganda.

The chairperson of the Human Rights Commission Uganda, Miriam Wangadya, is devastated and despairing. The gruesome ritualistic killing of innocent victims often young children is heartbreaking, she says. The mutilated bodies found are disgusting witnesses of a violent death.

She cites a number of well-known recent ritual murder cases including the ritual murder of a four-year old girl in Jinja district in 2021 and the ritualistic murder of two young girls, sisters, by their mother, also in Jinja district in 2023. Statistics release by Uganda National Police indicate that ritualistic sacrifices are on a steady increase from 22 cases in 2019, to 45 in 2020, to 46 in 2021 and 72 in 2022.

The chair of the Human Rights Commission Uganda makes a plea for harsher punishment.

Since Uganda observes a moratorium on the death penalty she suggests to have a national debate whether indeed there are situations which require the death penalty. The law must take its full force, she argues, and murderers who kill innocent and helpless children deserve the capital punishment. Punishment should match the crime. A stern message is to be sent out that murder in al its forms is totally unacceptable and is met with the strongest deterrent, she insists.

But will the capital punishment, ‘an eye for an eye’, really act as a deterrent for the greedy and ruthless criminals who are willing to sacrifice the life of a human being for more money, power, or prestige?
(FVDK)

Murderers of innocent children deserve harsher punishment

Published: April 9, 2024
By: New Vision, Uganda

Source: Murderers of innocent children deserve harsher punishment

Uganda: witchdoctor arrested over murder of two siblings in ritual sacrifice

Due to time constraints I haven’t posted much recently. The ritual murder reported below dates from early April. A witchdoctor killed two childen for ritual purposes in Kiboga District, approximately 120 kilometres (75 mi), by road, northwest of Kampala, Uganda’s capital. The headless bodies of the victims were discovered the day after the two children, siblings, got missing. 

The police and authorities in Uganda are to be commended for their swift action. The witchdoctor, Sulaiman Ssentongo, and an accomplice, Maureen Namuleme, were arrested. More arrests are not excluded.
(FVDK)

Witchdoctor arrested over murder of two siblings in ritual sacrifice

Published: April 9, 2024
By: The Observer, Uganda

The directorate of crime intelligence (DCI) has arrested a witch doctor, Sulaiman Ssentongo, suspected of having killed two children in Kiboga on Wednesday last week for ritual sacrifice.

After committing the crime, Ssentongo reportedly fled to Kireka, Kira Municipality, in Wakiso district. Shock engulfed residents of Kasega parish, Kapeke sub-county, when the siblings; Sylvia Nantongo aged five and Esther Nakasumba aged two mysteriously went missing. Locals launched a search for the siblings on Wednesday night and their headless bodies were discovered the next day. 

Upon finding the bodies, police in Kiboga launched investigations using sniffer dogs which ended up at Ssentongo’s shrine. It was later established that Ssentongo aged 32 had fled the area with the help of his accomplice Maureen Namuleme, aged 41.

Kiboga police quickly alerted DCI and the police’s cyber unit which started tracking the duo’s movement using a mobile phone until they were found hiding in Kireka township, one of the busiest suburbs of Kampala. 

Detectives have revealed that Ssentongo has confessed that he was given transport money to run to safety after committing the crime by Namuleme – something which he later denied. The duo has been transported back to Kiboga where they allegedly committed the crime. SP Racheal Kawala, Wamala regional police spokesperson, has confirmed Ssentongo and Namuleme’s arrest.

“Our crime intelligence operatives have apprehended two suspects in connection with the double murders that occurred in Kasega parish, Kapeke sub-county, Kiboga district. The suspects have been identified as Sulaiman Ssentongo, 32 years old Namuleme Maureen, 41 years old,” said Kawala. 

Ssentongo is a resident of Kirinda village, Kasega parish, Kapeke sub-county, in Kiboga district while Namuleme is a resident of Kisingiri cell, Namiremebe Bakuli ward, Rubaga division, Kampala. 

Kawala said Ssentongo was tracked using his mobile phone. She also said that Ssentongo alleges that Namuleme is the person who helped him with money to flee the scene. 

“The suspects are currently detained at Kiboga CPS for interrogation, bringing the total number of arrests to three. Preliminary findings suggest that on April 3, 2024, at 10:00 pm, two children, were reported missing. Unfortunately, their torsos were discovered on April 4, 2024, in Kirinda village, Kasega parish, Kapeke sub-county,” Kawala explained.

However, it is not yet clear whether the children were alone at the time they were abducted by the witch doctor or whether there was assistance from a close relative since they went missing in the night hours.

Source: Witchdoctor arrested over murder of two siblings in ritual sacfrice

Kiboga District, Uganda

Zimbabwe: ritual killings rise

Shocking news from Zimbabwe, as reported by a national news site: ritual murders in the country are on the rise – allegedly.

Whereas the occurrence of ritualistic murders, locally often referred to as ‘muti murders’, is not in doubt – as demonstrated by the numerous cases reported on the present site, you may consult the dropdown menu ‘African countries’ to access all posts on Zimbabwe – it is nevertheless shocking to hear that there is an apparent recent surge in the number of these cruel crimes. As you may know, the organs or body parts ‘needed’ for ‘muti‘ have to be harvested from a living person.

One would think that the Tapiwa Makore murder case and the sentencing to death of his convicted murderers, his uncle and an accomplice, would deter potential perpetrators of muti related murders. According to recent newspaper reports, this is not the case.

A psychotherapist consulted (see the article below) points to mental illness as a significant factor behind these gruesome murders. I’ve often asked myself the same question: What makes someone a ritualistic murderer? Certainly, more research needs to be done as to why people ‘cross a border’ and decide to kill another human being – in a cruel way – as a means to ‘get rich quick’, to have success in business or to gain a certain (often political) position. Is it superstition? Is it a criminal mind? Selfishness? Greed? Or are ritualistic murderers mentally disturbed persons who should be treated for their ‘illness’ in stead of punished – death by hanging or a long prison sentence?

Asking the question means answering it.

Who knows the answer?
(webmaster FVDK)

Zimbabwe: Ritual Killings Rise

Is the capital punishment a deterrent for potential ritualistic killers?

Published: February 3, 2024
By: ZimEye, Zimbabwe

A disturbing trend is sweeping across the nation, as reports of suspected ritual murders are on the rise, leaving communities in shock and children as primary targets of these heinous acts.

The superstitious belief that killing individuals in a specific manner, particularly involving torture and processing certain body parts, can create and maintain wealth is contributing to an alarming increase in brutal killings, leaving many with unanswered questions.

The resurgence of ritual killings has prompted concerns and calls for action from various quarters.

Traditional healer Sekuru Banda, dismissing the superstitions, condemns those who propagate such beliefs, emphasizing the need for hard work instead of seeking easy money through horrific means. Banda urges a change in mindsets, highlighting the dangers of people being led astray in pursuit of illusory wealth.

To gain further insights, a news crew sought the perspective of psychotherapist Dr. Mertha Nyamande, who points to mental illness as a significant factor behind gruesome murders.

Dr. Nyamande explains that many offenders, especially those involved in removing body parts, may suffer from mental ailments or psychopathy, challenging the notion that these acts are rooted in ritualistic beliefs. From a legal standpoint, Mr. Moffat Makuvatsine sheds light on how the law addresses ritual killings.

While there is no specific provision for such crimes, they can be treated as murder committed under aggravating circumstances, potentially carrying the death penalty or life imprisonment.

The legal expert emphasizes that any murder proved to have ulterior motives may result in severe penalties. Recent cases, including the tragic death of Tapiwa Makore, have brought the issue of ritual killings to the forefront.

Tapiwa’s killers, his uncle Tapiwa Senior and Tafadzwa Shamba, were sentenced to death for their involvement in the gruesome crime.

However, the scourge continues, with a recent incident in Guruve involving the brutal murder of a three-year-old, whose body was decapitated and burnt, with missing body parts.

The perpetrators of this heinous act remain at large, underscoring the urgency for a concerted effort from law enforcement and communities to address and eradicate the deeply troubling surge in ritual killings.

As the nation grapples with this distressing epidemic, there is a pressing need for comprehensive strategies that include education, mental health awareness, and stringent legal measures to curb the prevalence of such horrific crimes.

Source: Ritual Killings Rise

Ghana, Central Region: three fishermen mistaken as suspects in ritual killing case; assaulted by mob

Yesterday a posted an article on a suspected ritual murder attempt at Senya Beraku in the Central Region, Ghana. I also cautioned to be always careful in interpreting facts or so-called facts and not to jump to conclusions.

Apparently this is exactly what happened in the Assin South District of the Central Region when a mob attacked three men who were suspected of involvement in the beheading of young children. It was later discovered that they were innocent but then the beating was over and the fishermen had to be hospitalized where they are being treated – reportedly they are badly wounded.

Mob justice or jungle justice is always wrong. Let the police and the authorities do their work. The rule of law must always prevail.
(webmaster FVDK)

Three fishermen mistaken as suspects in ritual killing case; assaulted by mob

Published: January 31, 2024
By: Eric Nana Yaw Kwafo – Modern Ghana

Ghana, Central Region showing Assin South District where the incident took place

Source: C/R: Three fishermen mistaken as suspects in ritual killing case; assaulted by mob

Nigeria, Adamawa State: man who confessed being a witch and turning his neighbour into a chicken almost lynched to death

The following article contains a weird story. It’s not about a ritual murder or ritualistic act, although witchcraft could be included in the category of ritualistic acts. The common base is superstition and the belief in the supernatural impact of one’s occult acts or deeds.

Whatever the explanation may be of the behavior of the man who believes that he is a witch and has turned his neighbor into a chicken, the reason to include this article is the wish to demonstrate that also in Adawama State superstition, witchcraft and other ritualistic acts including murder exist. See my postings of 2018: Ritual Killings – over 20 children missing in Adamawa State, 2019: (Ritual killers on rampage in Adamawa State (a 2014 article, and 2021: Adamawa State: Rev. Dr Kehinde Babarinde: ‘The church must speak out against the ritual killing of women’.

Adamawa State is located in located in the North East geopolitical zone of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. 
The Federal Republic of Nigeria is divided into six geopolitical zones commonly called zones. 

Nigeria’s six geopolitical zones

Adamawa State is one of Nigeria’s largest states, it is the eight largest in land mass ( with a total land mass of 36,917 km2. It is Nigeria thirteenth least populous state with an estimated population of 6 – 7 million people. Adamawa State is mainly inhabited by Fulani people. Other ethnic groups in Adamawa State are the Mumuye, Higi, Kapsiki, Chamba, Margi (Marghi), Hausa, Kilba, Gude, Wurkum, Jukun, and Bata peoples. An estimated 100 indigenous ethnic groups live in this northeastern state which borders Cameroon.
Adamawa State is also religiously very diverse. About 50% of the population is Muslim and 40% is Christian while the remaining 10% are adherents of traditional ethnic religions.
(Source: Wikipedia.)
(webmaster FVDK)

For the official website of the Adawama State government: click here

Man confesses to being a witch and turning his neighbour into a chicken in Adamawa State

Published: August 15, 2023
By: Azonuchechi Chukwu – Naija247News, Nigeria

Ms Azonuchechi Chukwu has a BSC holder in mass communication Ebonyi State University

A 23-year-old man identified as Tangla Isuwa, was almost lynched to death in Adamawa State after he allegedly confessed to being a witch and turning his neighbour, Danladi Markus, “to a chicken for three weeks.”

Tangla, who hails from Dong community in Demsa Local Government Area of the state, allegedly said he bewitched Markus and made him sick for allegedly killing his father by witchcraft in the community.

It was gathered that some youths in the community descended on Tangla and beat him up in an attempt to kill him for the alleged crime.

Spokesman of the state police command, SP Suleiman Yahaya Nguroje, who confirmed the incident on Monday, August 14, 2023, said about 15 persons have been arrested for allegedly assaulting the suspect.

During interrogation by the PPRO, Tangla said that in 2020, a man known as Mabudi gave him charms to fortify himself, explaining that Mabudi had asked him to mix the charms with white chicken and eat after cooking it.

Tangla said after he had eaten the chicken mixed the charms, he started seeing animals like rats, horses and cattle with 3 legs and sometimes 6 legs without other people seeing them.

Tangla said that it was at this point in time that he knew he had been initiated into occultism, saying that since then, he became a full fledged witch.

He further narrated that his biological father died this year, and alleged that it was Danladi Markus and his step father known as Absalom who killed him by witchcraft.

According to him, after the death of his father, he met Mabudi and informed him about his plan to retaliate by killing Danladi Markus by witchcraft.

He said that he caught Danladi’s spirit by 2:00am and handed him over to other witches where they tied him with ropes on a mango tree, saying that Danladi became critically ill.

He pointed out that a family meeting was summoned, and that at the meeting, Danladi started mentioning his name and that of Mabudi as those responsible for his sickness

He said that Mabudi escaped from the venue of the meeting leaving him behind, and that immediately, some youths in the community stormed the meeting and forced him to “lose” Danladi or be killed.

Tangla explained that he had pleaded with the youths to wait until 12:00am for him to lose Danladi and assured them that he won’t be killed.

According to him, he went into the spirit and untied him, but that he suffered a lot because Mabudi did not want him to “lose Danladi but to slaughter him for meat.”

Tangla Isuwa assured that he had succeeded in releasing Danladi and that he is at the moment sound and healthy.

He insisted that he is a witch but vehemently denied killing anybody.

Source: Man confesses to being a witch and turning his neighbour into a chicken in Adamawa

Map of Nigeria showing Adamawa State among the 36 states of the Federation

Zimbabwe: Hwange man’s quest for instant riches ends in tragedy as muti kills children and family members

This time it’s not a report on a muti murder which caught my attention but a chilling story about a muti ritual going awry. The report shows how deeply entrenched the belief in muti is in local communities in Zimbabwe (and, presumably, also elsewhere) including the christian church.
(webmaster FVDK)

The Deadly Deal: Hwange Man’s Quest for Instant Riches Ends in Tragedy as Muthi Kills Children and Family Members

The Ill-Fated Quest for Instant Riches (Image Credit: B-Metro)

Published: November 24, 2023
By: Audrey L. Ncube – Bizarre, Local Zimbabwe News

The quest for instant riches turned tragic for a man in Hwange after the ‘get rich quick muthi’ he got from a sangoma went awry. The muthi he obtained from the sangoma to ‘accumulate wealth’ ended up killing his children and family members.

The Ill-Fated Quest for Instant Riches

In a harrowing tale that underscores the perils of seeking sudden riches through muthi, Jekete Ncube from Kapame Village found himself ensnared in a nightmare when a muthi, intended to grant him instant wealth, brought unimaginable tragedy instead.

According to B-Metro, Ncube’s aspiration for instant wealth led him to procure a mysterious muthi, reportedly housing a python skin within a gourd. Entranced by the promise of wealth, he soon realized the muthi wielded a sinister power, one that claimed the lives of his children and family, leaving him financially destitute and emotionally shattered.

Despite the fervent belief in the muthi’s potency, Ncube’s fortune remained unaltered, casting a shadow of despair over his hopes. A source close to Ncube revealed his mounting frustration and disillusionment as the promised prosperity failed to materialize.

Confronting the sangoma responsible for the cursed muthi, Ncube, consumed by anger and desperation, demanded answers. The sangoma, unmoved by Ncube’s ire, purportedly cited patience and unwavering belief as prerequisites for the muthi’s delayed effects.

Seeking Redemption: Cleansing and Cautionary Tales

The grim turn of events caused Ncube’s family to seek spiritual help from Archbishop Emmanuel Mutumwa of the Johane Masowe eChishanu Apostolic Church.

During a cleansing ceremony presided over by Archbishop Mutumwa, Ncube made a shocking admission, disclosing his misguided quest for wealth through the cursed muthi.

Unveiling hidden remnants of the ill-fated pursuit – a cache of coins and a drum filled with maize grains – Ncube’s confession sent shockwaves through his family, igniting a maelstrom of emotions and brewing resentment toward him.

Expressing remorse and pleading for deliverance from the malevolent forces unleashed by the muthi, Ncube cautioned against the perilous allure of shortcuts to wealth, warning others against falling prey to similar ill-conceived ventures.

Source: The Deadly Deal: Hwange Man’s Quest for Instant Riches Ends in Tragedy as Muthi Kills Children and Family Members

Also:

Screenshot – for the article click here

Uganda: some reflections on human sacrifice

Human sacrifice is a widespread phenomenon in Uganda while some specific regions are notoriously known for their ritualistic killings. Yesterday, November 5, I posted an article on the sentencing of a man from Mayunge District who had killed his son for personal gain in 2017, and the day before, on November 4, I posted an article on a mother in the Kiira region who had killed two of her children, also for ritual purposes. These are not isolated cases as the following demonstrates.

Districts of Uganda – Wikipedia

Two witchdoctors in the Kamuli District were arrested earlier this year, suspected of a ritual child sacrifice while in Luwero District on January 7 an 8-year boy was kidnapped from his family’s courtyard and found back without head, fingers and toes. In November 2022 two men from Kayunga District were found guilty of child sacrifice committed in 2009. Within Uganda the Kayunga District has earned the dubious reputation of being one of the most notorious killing places.

Kayunga District shares this reputation with the Kiira region (Wakisi District, Central Region). The most recent ritual murder case in this region is the one reported above but also in August 2022 a man and his wife in Jinja District were arrested for killing their child in a ritual practice. In May 2021 police in Kayunga District had to protect a man from a mob threatening to kill him after he had allegedly killed two of his children for rituals purposes.

In July 2022 a spike was reported in human sacrifices. I’m afraid that the child sacrifice and other ritual murder cases mentioned in this report (see my July 11 posting) and the above mentioned murders are just the tip of the iceberg. After all, it is only logical to assume that not all ritual killing cases are being discovered or reported. An unknown number of children or elderly people, victims of ritualistic practices, may have disappeared without leaving traces.

Since 2021 convicted ritual murderers in Uganda may face the death penalty. In May parliament enacted the Prevention and Prohibition of Human Sacrifice Bill, 2020, which includes the capital punishment or life imprisonment for any person found guilty of human sacrifice. The bill inspired me to some reflections – see my May 7 posting.

Since the enactment of the bill a number of convicted ritual murderers have been sentenced to heavy sentences and many years in prison, but the ugly phenomenon has not been eradicated. It’s a sad reality.