Since the 1980’s thousands of innocent men and women have been accused of being witches or of using witchcraft. Many have been murdered by their communities without trial. Many more have been banished from their villages, their homes destroyed and members of their families murdered or forced to flee in fear of their lives.
This year alone in South Africa, the following cases have been reported...
January 4 2010
Mamakazi Mkhwanazi and her granddaughter Thobile Mbatha were burnt beyond recognition in Gunjaneni (Eastern Cape) after being accused of practising witchcraft.
January 13 2010
An 81-year-old woman, Badabukile Ndlovu, was stabbed 50 times and her throat slit by her neighbour who accused her of witchcraft, in KwaKwiliza near Mtubatuba, KwaZulu-Natal.
February (?) 2010
A 68-year-old man, Mbongeni Zungu, died after community members attacked him and burnt down his shack in Umlazi E section. They accused him of practising witchcraft, KwaZulu-Natal.
February 3 2010
A 65-year-old woman, Nokitani Tshemesi and her three grandchildren, Phumeza Ntakani aged 13, and Nonkoliseko Malolo and Akhona Malolo both aged 10, were found stabbed to death in their home in Kwaaiman, Eastern Cape. They were accused of witchcraft.
March 1 2010
A Limpopo family identified simply as the Mafogo family were accused of witchcraft and had their house burnt down in Magaung village at Sekororo, Maake, Limpopo
None of these victims were Witches!
United Nations officials and civil society representatives from affected countries have already urged African governments to acknowledge the extent of the murder and persecution of women, children and men in their countries, as a result of witchcraft accusations.
....In response to witch-hunts in (their) own country, and on the continent of Africa, the South African Pagan Rights Alliance launched a '30 day advocacy campaign against witch-hunts in Africa' in 2008. This campaign targeted the South African government (Parliament and the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development), the South African Human Rights Commission, the Commission for Gender Equality, and South African political parties.
In 2009 the advocacy campaign focused on highlighting the role of institutionalized prejudice against witchcraft and witches within South African legislation, by politicians, the South African Police Service, the South African Human Rights Commission and the Commission for Gender Equality.
The 2010 campaign is aimed at petitioning the African Union General Assembly and the Pan-African Parliament, as well as the United Nations, to address the ongoing witchcraft hysteria in Africa, through constructive and humane programs that seek to entrench and strengthen human rights and human dignity, instead of seeking to suppress witchcraft or ignore ongoing human rights abuses within member countries.
The ‘witchcraft epidemic’ in Africa is fueled by religious extremism. Practitioners of traditional African religions, traditional healers, witch-doctors and Christian missionaries and religious leaders incite witch-hunts on this continent.
There are comparisons to be made between Africa’s current witch-craze, European Inquisitions and American witch-hunts. Perhaps the lessons to be learned in Africa are the same as those that needed to be learned by Europeans and Americans; there is no ‘culture’ without human rights.
All men and women, including Witches, have the right to live without being falsely accused, assaulted, persecuted or murdered.
Say NO to witch-hunts in Africa!
Support or participate in this campaign?
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Sign this petition in support of the 30 day advocacy campaign against witch-hunts in Africa.
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This advocacy campaign is sponsored by the South African Pagan Council and the South African Pagan Rights Alliance, and is supported by Pagan Federation International, Pagan Federation England and Wales, the Correllian Nativist Tradition (U.S. & S.A.) and Circle Sanctuary.
Source: Facebook event page for 30 days of advocacy against Witch-hunts in Africa-- facebook.com/event.php?eid=274505543709