Poverty, joblessness blamed for ritual killings
Poverty and unemployment are contributing to the high incidence of ritual killings in Limpopo because some people believe it is an instrument to getting rich easily and quickly.
These were the findings at a two-day conference in Thohoyandou at the weekend, where cultural experts agreed that there was a growing belief among communities that being in possession of human body parts could bring wealth. The conference was organised by Limpopo Premier Sello Moloto's office and the Department of Safety and Security. Police are investigating 52 unsolved ritual murders in the area.
Anthropologist Professor Victor Ralushai told the conference that it was an old practice to kill people and remove their body parts. The practice had been used mostly by royal families.
He said chiefs generally committed muti murders so that they could become superior and respected by their communities.
Mathole Motshekga, of the Kara Heritage Institute, said African religions did not allow people to be killed for supernatural power gains andurged the government to mobilise the communities to fight this myth.