Law enforcers to decide


WHILE law-enforcement agencies are clamping down on violence relating to sorcery claims, self-proclaimed ‘sorcerers’ are going around convincing people to use their expertise.
The existence of these ‘sorcerers’ in our society gives rise to the belief that sorcery is real.
It makes people believe that supernatural powers or black magic can be used to achieve certain outcomes.
The most talked about act of sorcery in Papua New Guinea is that which harms people.
This is even though there is no evidence to suggest sorcery as the cause.
Natural causes are overlooked.
Fake stories relating to sorcery take centre stage when discussing possible causes.
In coastal regions, where people believe in black magic, ‘sorcerers’ are blamed for the death of a person.
‘Sorcerers’ use lime, dead people’s hair, body parts and bones, plants, etc, to perform certain rituals.
Sorcery can be used out of jealousy, frustration or revenge.
This form of sorcery is called ‘puripuri’ in Tok Pisin.
Up in the Highlands, it is believed that certain people possess supernatural powers to pluck out others’ internal body organs without physically cutting through the body.
People ignore natural causes of death and come up with fake stories to pin down sorcery.
This practice is called ‘sanguma’.
In East Sepik, sanguma refers to the injection of liquid into another person’s body using a syringe to kill this person.
Sorcerers claim to use supernatural powers to lure their victims up close to them so that they can be injected.
They forget the faces of the sorcerer if they do not die.
As pointed out in the news, and through readers’ letters in this section, we are believing what is not real.
Sorcery evolved during the time of our ancestors, who were not exposed to the knowledge and information we have today.
In this day and age, we have no reason to believe in sorcery.
Many ducated people are ignoring this fact and have fallen for traditional reasoning.
This is why people back in the village will not let go of believing in sorcery.
Our educated people should conduct awareness and advocate for ‘sorcerers’ to giveup the practice.
Providing factual information on this false practice would lessen some of the distress our society has been put under.
Where there is physical contact between the victim and the sorcerer, as in East Sepik, the sorcerer should be penalised by the lawful authority.
Similarly, there is a twist to sorcery in the highlands region, where people are injecting toxic chemicals into the food and drinks of their victims.
Whether this can be classified as ‘sorcery’ is a matter for law enforcers to decide.
We know that the law will deal with it where there is physical evidence.