In a suspected case of ritual murder, a five year old boy from Nyakuchicha area under Chief Makopa in Chiweshe was brutally killed and his body was discovered six days later with some limbs missing.
The dismembered body of the boy, Patrick Murongazvombo (pictured) who went missing on Sunday last week was discovered on Saturday.
The 17th of January 2016 will be a Sunday the Murongazvombo family under Headman Mbisva, might not want to remember.
The day had started with normal routines of attending church but by its end, their beloved son, Patrick had gone missing. He was never to be seen alive again. The 5 year old disappeared from the cattle kraals where he was playing after coming from church that Sunday afternoon.
Patrick’s dismembered body was found after six days in an advanced state of decomposition, with both hands and legs missing.
When the ZBC News visited the Murongazvombo homestead, villagers attending the funeral of the boy were yet to come to terms with the mysterious death.
Elders in the area suspect that the way the body of the boy was butchered could have something to do with ritual practices. The murder follows another incident in Kwekwe’s Rutendo suburb where two four year old boys were also found dead on Thursday with some body parts missing. Another case was reported in Marondera last week, and Knowledge Kapesa, who is accused of murdering his brother’s 6 year old boy, Tashinga, appeared in court on Saturday and was remanded in custody to the 4th of February.
Meanwhile, Zimbabweans have been called upon to tighten the social moral fabric to protect defenseless children. The church, traditional healers, social commentators and organisations that deal with children are all agreed that more has to be done to bring culprits to book.
“There has been an upsurge in serious crimes related to children and these killings might be a result of greedy individuals who after consulting traditional or faith healers are told to use the blood of the innocent, a situation which should be investigated and condemned,” Childline National Director, Ms Stella Motsi said.
“The law must be enforced for the benefit of society,” Msasa Project Director, Ms Netty Musanhu said. “Such behaviour is retrogressive as the country had made great strides in protecting and upholding the rights of children,” Mr Toindepi Kamusewu of Action Aid said.
Human rights activist and Tag a Life International Director, Ms Nyaradzo Mashayamombe believes the trend has created uncertainty and fear among communities to an extent that children are no longer free to move around and carry out their activities.
Traditional healers are often accused of misleading people into believing that they can make money through ritual killings. “This evil practice is detestable just as that practiced mostly in East Africa where albinos are targeted. All such rituals have never made people rich but make people suffer as the blood of the innocent will always avenge,” said George Kandiero, the ZINATHA President.
Pentecostal Association of Zimbabwe Reverend Never Muparutsa noted that the mushrooming of some dubious churches cannot just be ignored as some are evil.
“Leaders of some so called churches are satanic in nature and believe in rituals in an effort to gain membership and get rich,” he said, adding that people must be vigilant and protect their children.
What is frightening is that some of the murder cases are suspected of having been perpetrated by relatives. With reports of increasing cases of domestic violence, it is feared the home has become the most dangerous place to be.-ZBC