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Teens terrorise community

by Staff reporter
07 Jul 2023 at 07:55hrs | Views
FEAR has gripped St Peters, on the outskirts of Bulawayo, with residents divided on whether attacks on residents by three minors are acts of robbery or satanism.

The three minor brothers, aged 16, 11 and eight are allegedly on the rampage, attacking villagers under the cover of darkness.

The victims have described the perpetrators of the attacks as three boys covered in white powder and clad in robes, fuelling speculation from some villagers  that the attacks were motivated by  satanism.

Other residents, however, are not buying the satanism story and have branded the attacks sheer criminality, prompting the St Peters local leadership to call for   an urgent meeting that was held last Saturday.

A woman in her mid-twenties told  during the week that she was lucky not to suffer a miscarriage after she was allegedly attacked by the boys.

"I was fortunate not to lose my baby in January this year because l was attacked by those children and fell down while they searched my bag for valuables.

"It was scary. They attacked me to the point that I fell to the ground and I was heavily pregnant at the time.

"These children have terrorised a lot of people. Some people say that the boys climb on trees and attack villagers from there. Others say the boys climb trees at night and make cat-like noises," said Dorcas Moyo.

A woman who preferred anonymity said her husband ran for dear life after passing under a guava tree and hearing cat-like noises at night while coming home from work.

"My husband came and told me that he was pelted with stones by people who were making cat-like noises.

"We are in fear because I strongly believe that these children are involved in some form of witchcraft," she said.

The white powder face covered and  robe-wearing antics of the alleged   attackers has led to villagers suspecting Satanism.

Villagers have been demanding that the minors be banished from St Peters but those demands were shot down at the Saturday meeting.

The minors' step mother and grandmother also attended the meeting where it was proposed that the families of those attacked and the boys' guardians would be called for another meeting to iron out the problem in an effort to cool down tempers in the village.

Police spokesman Inspector Abednico Ncube has time and again, through the B-Metro, called on communities not to take the law into their own hands but to report cases to the authorities.

The residents development committee chairperson Juliet Bethule said it was puzzling why the children's guardians allow them to stay up late until the wee hours of the morning.

"It's not normal for three boys to be playing around at 1am climbing trees so villagers have a right to be very afraid when such incidents happen.

"As it is no one wants to be  associated with these children because villagers fear they were initiated into witchcraft.

"For now, the village committee cannot conclude the fate of this family. However, we will know after the next village meeting," said Bethule.

Source - B-Metro