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Witch-hunt in Congo

Congolese women blamed for witchcraft and killed without trial

Arkanji was twelve years old when her family accused her of witchcraft, forcing her to flee her home. “My dad began telling the neighbors I was a witch. He called everyone living nearby and even relatives who live far away. He told everyone I was a witch”, the girl recalled. She is just one of many other children abandoned by her family.

In South Kivu, a province in the Democratic Republic of Congo, if a family faces hardships or illnesses, people seek out local messiahs dubbed Mujakazi. Their solution is to find a woman or child “possessed by demons”, and pronounce them responsible. In most cases those accused by Mujakazi are burned alive or stoned to death and only few can flee.

Why is it impossible to refute such accusation?