Tonota youths protest against ritual murders

Last Thursday and Friday a group of Tonota teenagers calling themselves Malwantwa rioted in the streets and fought the police, frustrated at the authorities’ apparent inaction to stem the increase of Muti murders in their village.

The youths say that Tebogo ‘Pingping’ Kereemang was murdered by a renowned businessperson (names known to this publication) in the village for ritual purposes in order for the business to flourish. Their youths’ leader, Kamogelo Mashaba, explained that they will not rest until justice has been done.

Batho ba phekola ka rona (some businesspeople and politicians are harvesting our body parts for ritual purposes). But the police and those in authority are doing absolutely nothing to protect us from this menace,” said Mashaba, adding that politicians are involved.

Mashaba said he is a concerned member of the community and not related to Kereemang. He said his intention and that of those following him is to make the village of Tonota free from this menace.

“This is the fourth incident that the police are not taking seriously. We are tired of watching our relatives, neighbors, brothers and sisters being killed for ritual murders,” said Mashaba.

Seemingly there is an increase of ritualistic murders ahead of each general election.

A traditional healer from Zambia who talked to The Voice on condition of anonymity revealed that tongues and the foreskin are the most commonly used body parts for those who want to win elections. He also said.

54-year-old Nancy Moseki is a sangoma in Mochudi. She has been practicing for the past 26 years and concurred with Mashaba that ritual murders do exist with statistics increasing when the election time is approaching.

“It (ritual murder) happens,” said Moseki although she is yet to be approached by a politician seeking her services for muti purposes. She said the incidence of muti murder skyrockets during the election time because every politician wants to win.

According to statistics by the Botswana Police Services (BPS), a total of 287 deaths were recorded between January and September 2009, nearly one person per day for this period. Between August 2013 and March 2014, a total of 261 murder incidents have been recorded – a development that clearly shows that the incidence of homicide increases just before an election.

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