Killings go unreported for fear of retaliation

National

By NICHOLAS SIREO
MANY cases of sorcery-related torture and killings go unreported because people fear retaliation from attackers of persons suspected of practising sorcery.
This was revealed by Dr Numuc Kemung from Martin Luther Seminary yesterday in relation to the national conference on church role and sorcery.
He said killings happened frequently in rural parts of the country but many people were too scared to report because they feared for their lives.
“Churches throughout the country should be empowered to take ownership of that and use local systems in evangelism to address sorcery-related issues.”
Kemung said that people’s negligence and fear of intimidation and harassment have seen sorcery-related violence becoming rampant in isolated and remote parts of the country.
“The onus is on the Government to fund individual churches to develop a programme and conduct awareness in all the villages in the country to address that issue seriously,” he said.
Kemung told The National that sorcery-related violence was a serious issue that needed to be addressed immediately through government-church partnership.
“Both good and evil spirits exists in the world, therefore the Government should use the churches as an avenue to address this ongoing issue that has destroyed the lives of many people.”
Kemung highlighted that many good suggestions were made during the three-day conference on church role and sorcery and some of which could be used to effectively reduce sorcery-related violence.
“Churches have to be proactive in changing the mindset of people because currently most apply jungle justice to harm or kill anyone believed to be involved in sorcery without evidence or trial,” he said.
Kemung suggested that elite prayer groups from each church should be at the frontline to change the mindset of people through prayer and activities.
Parliament repealed the Sorcery Act 1971 in 2013 and established the Sorcery National Action Plan in advocacy, counseling, health, legislative review and research.

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