Traditional leaders and police in Dowa have said they are in agreement with the anti-witchcraft campaign being promoted by the Association of Circular Humanism (ACH).
The two parties said this at a campaign organised by ACH in Traditional Authority Msakambewa in Dowa on Wednesday to sensitise the public on what laws say about witchcraft.
Msakambewa said any chief found mistreating the elderly and children because they are being accused of witchcraft will cease to be chief.
“I am not going to shield any village headman for mistreating old women, men and children based on witchcraft. It is the duty of the chiefs to protect their subjects and not install fear in the people’s hearts,” he said.
Dowa Police spokesperson Richard Kaponda said in an interview that police are in agreement with what the chiefs were saying.
“Just as the national officer-in-charge of community policing, Masauko Medi said, we will not hesitate to arrest anyone engaged in violence,” said Kaponda.
ACH director George Thindwa said, the association has so far rescued five people, who were being abused on witchcraft grounds.
“Calling women and children ‘witch’ is wrong and chasing them off their villages is totally inhuman. The laws forbid that,” said Thindwa.
ACH, funded by Norway, is implementing a three-year project to end witchcraft violence in the district.