Malawi Police rescues Karonga eldery people suspected to be witches

Irate members of the community in the area of group village headman Mwangolera, Traditional Authority Kyungu in Karonga the northern district of Malawi on Thursday destroyed properties and houses of some elderly  people who believed they were witches.

One of the houses of the elderly destroyed

One of the houses of the elderly destroyed

Karonga Police deputy spokesperson George Mulewa confirmed the incident, saying the community accused them of being involved in witchcraft.

He said police  in the district rescued Robert Mwangolera, 67, and 66-year-olds Ketness Nambera and Sofia Namanda from Mwangolera Village, on suspicion of practising witchcraft.

The community organised themselves into a mob, and accused the three  of being involved in witchcraft.

Their houses were set ablaze, while livestock and other property worth millions of kwacha were stolen, according to Mulewa.

He said: “A man from Mwangolera Village died on January 2 2018. Some people in the village suspected that the deceased was bewitched by Mwangolera and his friends.

“The fracas erupted after villagers mobilised themselves to kill the suspected people. Property, including livestock, has been stolen while some houses were burnt to ashes.”

Malewa said the law enforcers were investigating the matter.

The government has been calling on Malawians “to stop accusing the elderly of witchcraft whenever someone dies”.

The Malawi Civil Society also spoke up against the attacks, saying: “We would like to remind Malawians that mob justice violence, whatever the reasons behind it, finds no justification in both our domestic and international legal human rights system as it violates the right to due process, sanctity of life (Section 16 of Malawi Constitution) and their presumptive innocence until proven otherwise by a competent court of law.”

Belief in witchcraft runs deep in Malawi.

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Why is Malawi so backward? Why are these people as ignorant and as superstitious as their Ancestors were 100 years ago? Does anyone really believe that Malawi has been better off since independence? No, the Colonial Government should have stayed to finish the Civilising Mission.


I remember George Thindwa of Association for Secular Humanism , once campaigned against this act but the majority of Chiefs were against it. It is high time Chiefs in Malawi need to go for a refresher course to know their duties and responsibilities.

Jacob Zuma

Chonchi mkumati 74% educated in that district! To me ndi mbuli zokha zokha. Primitive people


These are the issues our chiefs need to attend to seriously and resolve amicably. Unfortunately our chiefs are busy with politics. Let us reason with our subjects and put stern measures on perpetrators of such barbaric acts and bring sanity to our villages other than worshiping politicians for personal monetary gains.


Arrest the people involved and give them very stiff punishment, not less than 7years with hard labour. This is a type of people that burn others alive for nothing at all.

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