Pitsane inyangas to sniff out thugs

Staff Writer
So fed up with criminials who seem too slippery for justice is Pitsane Chief that he has now roped in the supernatural to sniff out and apprehend the thugs.

Kgosi  Mompati Marumoloa on Friday summoned the villages' healers  and assigned each to a crime busting cluster. He hopes that the thugs will not be a match for the duo of tradition and modern technology. Last week, the village chief. The chief initially called the inyangas two weeks back, following reports that some thugs were bragging about how they were fortified from police and the courts by some inyanga. The meeting did not materials due to heavy rain. undaunted Kgosi Marumoloa convened the meeting again. This time, traditional doctors, seers and sangoma - about 20 came doctors and healers turned up. They will now be inducted into community policing clusters so that they can play a part in fighting crime.

The chief expalined to the healers that it was people's complaints that had compeled him to call them  Crime is on the increase in the village and he is greatly worried by the rumours of what the healers are reported to be doing, he said.

The doctors did not deny that they are indeed helping criminals escape justice. But they blamed the so called 'bo magogorwane ba dingakanyana' -  amateur doctors who come from other places and come to Pitsane to fleece residents of their money. to try and make money in Pitsane. It is these inyangas who mar the integrity of traditional medicine by using it for evil and wrong purposes like protecting criminals, they said.

Inyanga Mothupi Mogolwane, who doubles as a spiritual healer said he would never use his muti for evil purposes.He described sucg acts as very shameful, adding it birsmirches the good name of traditional medicine.

He said foreign inyangas are the ones who do this. The doctors in question are reported to have fled the village last week after they were summoned to the chief's meeting. It was said they feared the chief was going to ask them for operating licenses, which they do not have.

Mogolwane told the police who were present at the meeting that he would render his services for free to combat crime. "Nna ebile fa le batla legodu, mo tsee lenao o le tsise ko go nna ke tla lo mmaakanyetsa." (If you want to trace a thief, just bring his footsteps to me, I will deal with him). He decried what the amateur doctors were doing as disgusting and compared it to taming a poisonous snake that will soon revert to its old habits and bite the tamer.

Another traditional healer, Joel Setepenyane said welcomed

the idea to work with the police in combating crime as some communities have done it in the past. He called on other traditional healers present at the meeting to work together to tackle the problems of foreign inyangas who drag their name in the mud by indulging in evil practices in the village.

Another healer, Magare, who is a headman in one of the wards in the village narrated how he once caught an enemy inyanga trying to bewitch his Kgotla at night when he was handling a theft case. He said it is true some doctors help criminals but they should desist from doing this. Another doctor gave an example of a young man who has been terrorising the villagers for quite some time, but keeps escaping punishment. They said the young man commits crime with others who are currently serving jail terms while he is always acquitted and walks freely in the village boasting of his powerful muti that protects him from the law. The doctors called on the chief to protect his Kgotla with muti so that he will not be overcome by anything when dealing with criminals. They said a Kgotla is a very important place in the village tradition and it needs protection.

However, some doctors blamed the police for not doing their job to catch criminals. Instead, they said the police point fingers at doctors saying they help criminals escape. They said some officers in the village are  reluctant to do their job and are always dragging their feet during investigations. As a result, some criminals get released without charge.

Ramatlabama Police Station commander, Tshegofatso Mokumako appreciated the efforts of the traditional healers to help combat crime saying they want everyone to have an input. He said the police strongly believe that they are working hard to fight crime in the area as statistics show. He said they could not deduce from the crime statistics that the doctors are indeed conniving with criminals and interfering with their job. However, he does not dispute the fact that traditional medicine can work in criminal cases, saying that this is part of Botswana culture.

"We are not saying you should stop helping people, but we are saying you should help us fight crime as well," Mokumako said.

Pitsane will provide apilot for this hitherto untested method of crime busting, and it remains to be seen how the twins of police expertise and the supernatural power of the inyanga's will fare.t




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