Liberty Dube Weekender Correspondent
VILLAGERS in Chakohwa Village in Chimanimani West were on Monday left weak-kneed after mysterious creepy-looking goblins and witchcraft paraphernalia, popularly known as gona, were discovered at two homesteads’ doorsteps. The Chipongo family woke up on Monday morning to the sight of a brown gourd suspected to be a goblin which had colourful beads and black feathers on top. It was placed on a log outside the kitchen hut.
At the Mupikata homestead, there was a black clay pot which contained colourful beads and small sticks. A scary-looking stripped cloth was covering the clay pot which looked new. The Chipongo and the Mupikata families are not related. Their homesteads are about two kilometres apart. Both families were in state of shock when The Weekender visited their homesteads on Monday afternoon and were grappling to fathom the meaning of the strange developments. They were similar footprints at both homesteads.
Business at the usually busy Chakohwa Business Centre was brought to a halt as scores of villagers jostled to catch a glimpse of the macabre drama. Mrs Cleri Ali, who stays at Chipongo homestead, said they were living in fear and were not aware of the intentions of the objects.
“I woke up in the morning intending to prepare food for my school-going children before I was stopped in my tracks after coming face to face with the strange objects. I alerted my husband who was equally shocked. He went to Mutare to notify our uncles so that we could plan the way forward. We don’t know what to do. We hope traditional healers and community leaders will assist us,” she said.
Mucharemba Mupikata of Mupikata homestead was also baffled.
“I woke up preparing to go for work when I saw the clay pot which had beads and some scary items inside it. We are in a state of shock and fear. Minhenga yeshiri irimo yatityisa. We will not sleep in the house before a cleansing ceremony is done. This is very unusual. We have never seen something like this before. The fact that there is also a strange object at another homestead makes the whole issue complicated,” he said.
Village head Parireyi Evans Mutidzawanda, who was in the company of his aides and other villagers, visited both homesteads to get first-hand information. He said the happenings were shocking and strange. He said action would be taken soon before deaths or other calamities strike the village.
“Traditionally this is strange,” said Mr Mutidzawanda.
“I am shocked. We have launched investigations to ascertain the real intentions of the person who is behind this. We will also converge and advise both families after consultations with local traditional healers. We used to read of such bizarre stories in newspapers unaware that this would happen right on our doorstep. We will leave no stone unturned in our quest to get the truth,” he added.
The Weekender learnt that the items were expected to be burnt with the assistance of church leaders and traditional healers. Zimbabwe National Traditional Healers’ Association president Mr George Kandiero said the matter was potentially dangerous and should be treated as a matter of urgency.
“This is very dangerous. Some people might be up to something not good. These items may harm both families and cause calamities such as starvation, incessant death and sickness among other things. The community leaders should act fast and engage exorcists who should assess the danger and probably burn them if they are not harmful.
“This, however, should be treated as a matter of urgency. The set-up of the items from the pictures I saw reveals that they could be impending disaster if the matter is not dealt with amicably,” said Mr Kandiero.
A church leader who requested anonymity said families involved should seek the face of God and seek protection from future attacks.
“Although we appreciate the role played by exorcists in situations like these, it is critical for these families to seek protection from God and be safe from future attacks,” he said.