Family members have tussled following the death of a young man, resulting in the brutal deaths of two elderly people over witchcraft allegations and destruction of property.
Northern Region deputy police spokesperson Maurice Chapola said in an interview yesterday the two deceased persons Chimono Kamanga, 65, and William Kamanga, also elderly but whose age is unknown, were accused of killing through witchcraft Leonard Kamanga, 35, on December 28 2020 at Mpamba in Nkhata Bay.
All the three deceased were from Kamphala Village, Traditional Authority (T/A)Timmbiri in the district, and they were related.
Chapola said after Leonard’s death, his relatives went to the houses of the two the next day to apprehend them, but did not find them as they had fled for their lives. It forced the group to destroy some property.
He explained: “They returned home and burial for Leonard took place on January 2. While the ceremony was in progress, some angry people apprehended Chamono and William on suspicion that they had a hand in the death of Leonard.
“They took the two to the graveyard, where one of them was set ablaze while the other was severely hacked. Police rushed to the scene and took the hacked person to hospital. He was unfortunately, pronounced dead upon arrival.”
Chapola observed that such cases are on the rise in the district but said police have intensified arrests. He urged people to respect human life and the rule of law.
Said the police spokesperson: “Such mob killings are common with cases related to witchcraft, blood suckers and alleged criminals.
“We continue to making arrests. As for the current case, no arrests have been made but we continue with our investigations. Police are on the ground to normalise the situation.”
In a separate interview, a senior member of Mdauko wa Atonga (Mwato) the Reverend Maxwell Mezuwa Banda regretted the situation, urging people to respect human life.
Banda said Mwato leaders will have to meet to restrategise on how to deal with the matter.