‘Bad’ children condemned as witches

Bedwetting, disagreeing with parents or being left-handed are considered relatively normal features for many children, but in some African countries, these are grounds for sometimes deadly accusations of witchcraft against them.

Thousands of children each year are beaten, burned, imprisoned and subjected to exorcism rituals because they are believed to be witches, according to Kurt Madoerin, an adviser to the Regional Psychosocial Support Initiative (Repssi), which operates in East and Southern Africa.

“According to estimations of the minister of social affairs, as many as 50 000 children might be held in the apparently thousands of churches in Tanzania – often in dismal conditions – as they await exorcism,” Madoerin told delegates at a three-day-long psychosocial forum in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, last week.

Read it at the M&G.

Image – AFP