Saturday, May 19, 2007

By a sorcerer's word

Africa seems to be a few hundred years behind us when it comes to superstition and witchcraft. Is it fair to make fun of them? Yes!

AFTER SOME Ugandans appealed to a female traditional healer to cast a spell on the developers eyeing Mabira forest, the belief in witchcraft seems to have gone even farther. 

Nurses in Nabiswera health centre in Nakasongola district have now abandoned their duties, claiming that spirits were raping them and torturing male staff. 

The rather “mysterious beings” were said to be in the form of giant naked males who attack at night. But when the local administration decided to trace the source of the spirit, they hired a female sorcerer. 

Clementia Amono, who cleansed the area, implicated 13 suspects — all of whom were promptly arrested by the police. They will be charged with causing the closure of the health centre, lack of hard evidence notwithstanding.

Uganda must be a fun place to live. Can you imagine working in the field one day only to have the local police collect you because some sorcerer claims you sent evil spirits to a neighbor? It sounds too much like the Salem Witch Trials. I wonder who gets their property?

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vjack said...

While I agree that it is fair to make fun of them, I'd say that they have a better excuse for lingering idiocy than do American Christians.

beepbeepitsme said...

Superstition is a dangerous thing and a great way, apparently, to get back at people you don't like.

aidan said...

I found this story interesting because my folks worked in Nigeria in 50's and 60's. I spent my youth being shunted between boarding school in Ireland and schools in Nigeria. For a time they were stationed in southern Nigeria in a rural area that was steeped in juju culture. The belief the local people held in magic was total and absolute. People would become physically sick because of "a spell" and literally waste away. I think part of the power of sympathetic magic lies in belief. If you really believe that dude is zapping you with his voodoo, it's likely to have a psychosomatic effect. Credulity can be a dangerous thing - especially if the juju doctor happens to be called Dobson.