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Witchcraft accused flee

Appeal to families to return

THE Tzaneen municipality in Limpopo is frantically trying to locate two families who allegedly fled from a temporary shelter after being accused of practising witchcraft.

The municipality had offered the families shelter at a farm near Tzaneen after they were banished from their villages two weeks ago.

Though the buildings on the farm are dilapidated, the municipality had erected tents to accommodate the affected families.

In the first incident the Shipalanas from Julesburg village were banished after the head of the family was suspected of practising witchcraft following the mysterious death of a local person.

The Shipalana family was temporarily housed on Adam's farm, while their problems with the community were being attended to by municipal officials.

But the Shipalana family allegedly spent one night in the tents. They are now nowhere to be found.

Another family from GaMaake village also fled from the temporary shelter on Adam's farm.

The family was housed there after they were banished from their village after a man allegedly died after drinking morula beer.

The family was accused of bewitching the dead man. This allegedly resulted in the family clashing with the community.

Municipal spokesperson Thulani Thwala said yesterday they were frantically searching for the two families.

The municipality wants to make sure the families are safe and also because they want them to return to their original villages because their problems had been resolved.

"We are worried that the two families just left the accommodation offered to them without notifying us," Thwala said yesterday.

"We are doing our best to ensure that these families return to their respective villages.

"We also want to educate the community about the dangers of accusing people of practising witchcraft," Thwala said.

He further appealed for calm and asked people not to take the law into their own hands but to rather let the law take its course.

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