LINDA SOKO TEMBO writes
RESIDENTS of Kalundu area, in Lusaka West, have accused a witchdoctor, only identified as “Sibweni” of using the recent murder of 13-year-old, Faustina Mwila, in the area, to extort money from people.
The people complained that Witchdoctor Sibweni made them wash their faces in charms, and forced to contribute money prior to the girl’s burial, with a promise that they would “see” who the murderer was at the graveyard but to no avail.
According to sources, nothing happened when the people went to the graveyard and the witchdoctor later disappeared. He has not been seen to date.
The sources disclosed that Witchdoctor Sibweni was reportedly invited to the area by the former area chairman, a Mr Mtonga, whom the people are now unhappy with for making them lose an undisclosed amount of money.
The people in the area reportedly agreed to subscribe to a witchdoctor after efforts to get the police help to track the girl’s killer failed.
Faustina, a grade seven pupil at Isabela Primary School, was found murdered in the bush on June 6, after missing for 11 days.
The following is an interview about what exactly transpired during the funeral.
The Sun: What are your names?
Mr Chilala: My names are Matthews Chilala.
The Sun: Tell us what exactly happened?
Mr Chilala: What happened is that on the day of Faustina’s burial, the former chairman for Kalundu, Mr Mtonga, brought a witchdoctor whom he introduced as ‘Sibweni from Eastern Province’ and told us he would help identify who the girl’s killer was using charms if we contributed some money.
We were told we would find out at the graveyard who the murderer was if we agreed to do as Sibweni requested.
People contributed some money and agreed to have Sibweni wash their faces with charms but nothing happened at the graveyard, and the witchdoctor later vanished.
What is disheartening is that, Sibweni, connived with Mr Mtonga, to take advantage of distressed people and con them of money.
We have been searching for Sibweni but have failed to track him. Mr Mtonga has not been around to assist.
The Sun: What exactly happened?
Other witness: Sibweni brought some charms to the spot where the body was discovered, mixed them with water and requested everyone who wanted to attend burial to wash their faces with it.
We washed our faces with the charms and proceeded to the grave yard where the witchdoctor later joined us.
After lowering the coffin into the grave, Sibweni rinsed a knife, a machete, a whip, and some stones with some charms and then placed them on top of the coffin. We were told that this was done to ensure that whoever killed the girl “follows her soon”.
We were not shown any murderer at the grave yard as promised. We have just heard rumours about some two men being discovered dead, one in his house and the other one found tied to a tree with a wire, though there has been no proof.
The Sun: Tell us what you know about Sibweni?
Brenda Mwila (Faustina’s mother): The people here (Kalundu area) agreed to engage a witchdoctor to find out who the murderers are so they could hand them to the police. My family was not consulted and we did not even know anything about that decision.
We are told Mr Mtonga organised the witchdoctor to come and perform some rituals on the body prior to burial. We did not contribute any money as a family but the community members who wanted justice to prevail did.
So about 17:00hours, the witchdoctor came to where the body was, mixed some charms and asked all those going for burial to wash their faces with it.
I was disappointed though that despite the people’s efforts, the culprit was not found. The witchdoctor simply gave people false hope and got their money. People have been complaining.
My prayer is that God directs the police to the people who killed my daughter so that they could be brought to book. We have not received any information from the police ever since they collected samples from my daughter’s body.
Am still in tears over the loss of my first born daughter. I had hoped she would grow up, get educated and look after me.
I would like to encourage other mothers who may lose their children in similar circumstances to always trust in God and ensure that the search is started early.