Nov 17, 2012 – Farmer Steals Dead Baby From Grave In Matsiwo Village, Mbire Zimbabwe
Matsiwo villagers in Mbire area (Mashonaland Central Province) were left dumbfounded when they woke up in the morning, only to realise that their dead baby whom they had buried the previous day had been exhumed from the grave.
They were further shocked upon noticing that the grave was empty and the corpse was no where to be found.
However, the lifeless body was later found after a prominent farmer in the area confessed to have ‘stolen’ the corpse. He reportedly acknowledged to be the culprit behind the spine-chilling incident. The man is said to have revealed that he wanted to use the dead baby’s body for ritual purposes in a bid to strengthen his farming business.
The incident comes barely a couple of days after another corpse mysteriously got its hair shaved just before burial. Two elderly women are said to have come out of the closet in court where they confessed to have shaved the corpse’s hair. They allegedly revealed that they sought to sell the dead man’s hair to traditional healers.
Chief Matsiwo said a Chidodo man allegedly exhumed the grave of a baby who had just been buried. He said the man reportedly wanted to use the corpse to enhance his farming business. Chief Matsiwo said he got the shock of his life when the man allegedly opened up and revealed that he had dug the baby’s grave while acting on sangoma’s instruction.
“We have a shocking incident that took place in Headman Nyarungwe’s area in Chidodo. A woman in that village gave birth to a dead premature baby before elderly women buried the baby in the field instead of burying it at the river (as per traditional custom),” he said.
According to tradition, a baby who dies before or just after birth is buried by elderly women, mainly widows, on very moisture soil, usually near the river. Chief Matsiwo added that a day after the burial, one of his subjects passed through the grave, and figured out that the grave had been exhumed and only a blanket had been left in the grave.
Upon conducting his own investigations, the Chief’s subject learned that a very prominent farmer in the area, Aleck Mundenda, had allegedly done the unthinkable act.
“We then brought Mundenda before the traditional court where he acknowledged that he had committed the offence. He revealed that he wanted to use the corpse as a farming charm which he would hide in his granary in a bid to further prosper his farming business. Mundonda was fined three beasts and the baby was reburied near the river, close to the family’s homestead. Cases of witchcraft have greatly increased of late. Sangomas are encouraging people to participate in these evil things so as to get rich quick,” said the Chief.
He went on to say in another witchcraft-related incident, two elderly women shaved a dead man’s head and hid the hair for their own use.
“We have two elderly grannies who are villagers in the Kopo kraal in Chidodo area as well, who shaved the head of a corpse and hid the hair without the deceased’s family knowledge. They then took the hair and mixed it with ashes outside the deceased’s family homestead where they intended to sell the hair to sangomas,” he said.
Chief Matsiwo said the case was then brought before his court by the deceased’s family members who brought the hair to court as exhibit. The two women were fined one beast for the offence.
He warned villagers in the area against engaging in ‘get rich quick’ schemes as that is the major way of initiating one into the witchcraft (Source: Bulawayo24)