IRATE residents from Seregoma village have threatened to kick out the village Medical Officer in Charge, Peter Kaziimoto for declining to cooperate with traditional healers popularly known as’ lambalamba’ in activities related to witchcraft practices.
Kazimoto, who rejected ‘lambalamba’ demands, serves as Medical in Charge officer at Serengoma village at Mwimbi ward in Kalambo District, Rukwa region.
It further emerged that ‘lambalamba’ were enriching themselves by charging citizens in Rukwa Region exorbitantly, assuring them that they had powers to resurrect the dead and clean them from evil spirits as well as protecting them and their households from witches.
The incident transpired at Serengoma village when Kalambo District Commissioner (DC) MsTano Mwela was addressing a public rally, saying ‘lambalamba’ are breaching peace and tranquility in the precinct.
“Also, lambalamba are wreaking havoc on the citizens in the district which is intolerable” she warned.
It was at that moment some residents with scanty explanations told the DC that they did not want Kazimoto to continue serving as medical staff at the village dispensary arguing that he had disappointed them.
Though they could not point out why Kazimoto had disappointed them, they appealed to the DC to transfer him to another workstation.
Kazimoto then responded by telling the DC, “There are villagers here who are against me because I have refused to cooperate with lambalamba on activities related to witchcraft practices.”
On her part, DC Tano asked Kazimoto to continue with his duty at the health facility without any fear, warning that whoever will dare to harass him will be dealt squarely.
“I’m urging citizens to shun superstitious beliefs, ‘lambalamba’ are not only big liars bent on enriching themselves by charging them a lot of money but are like any other criminals. Please don’t worship them because they have no power to resurrect the dead,” she emphasised
Rukwa Regional Crime Officer (RCO) Mr Chacha Malo urged residents in the region to shun from trusting lambalamba because they are liars, conmen and gang of thieves.
“Please do not trust them, otherwise thy will land you into trouble because this is unacceptable social phenomenon,” explained the RCO
This incident occurred hardly two weeks after four teachers from Zyangoma Primary School reported to have abandoned their houses for fear of being killed by irate people after being accused of terrorising citizens with witchcraft acts.
It emerged that the four teachers took refuge at Mwimbi Ward, leaving the school located at Zyangoma village, Mwimbi Ward in Kalambo District, Rukwa Region with only two teachers. Initially, the school had six teachers.
However, the pupils are still attending classes with only two teachers.
“The four teachers from Zyangoma Primary School were compelled to abandon their houses after they found pieces of papers attached to the doors of their respective houses with written messages that threatened to kill them,” explained the RPC.
“After being informed over the incident, preliminary investigations carried out by law enforcers uncovered that the residents from Zyangoma village who collaborated with traditional healers popularly known as ‘lambalamba’, accused the teachers of witchcraft tricks,” added the RPC.
She added: “Worse still some men and parents are willing to let their wives and teen daughters sleep with ‘lambalamba’ believing that they undergo cleansing … this is backwardness, inhuman and barbaric behavior. We cannot tolerate it as it is unacceptable to the civilised society.”
She further added: “It is inconceivable that some people are compelled to sell their livestock including cattle and goats so that they can pay ‘lambalamba’ for superstitious treatment, saying the Police Force will deal with such conmen squarely.”
About 60 traditional healers nicknamed ‘lambalamba’ have been apprehended in Kalambo and Nkasi districts respectively for allegedly involving themselves in practices related to witchcraft.