By Jonk wa Mashamba
The local Sangomas have joined forces to oppose bail against one of their own. They received support from political parties and activists at the Alexandra Magistrates Court this morning.
A well-known gobela has been remanded and will appear before the court on 18 June 2021. He is alleged to have raped two minors in Alexandra, north of Johannesburg.
He’s no first offender. In the early 2000s, he went to prison for raping a girl, a boy and a dog.
Community safety activist Bheki Kubheka said the rape of a child is too much and too much.
Speaking outside the court while he was leading a picket, Kubheka said: “There are people who claim to be sangomes. This one one should not be released on bail. We extend our condolences to all rape victims. We want the death penalty to be restored.”
The president of Colossa Foundation, who is also a Sangoma, Ntsikelelo Ntsika said justice must prevail.
“We believe, as traditional healers, that communities should be safe havens. We do not condone any form of abuse by a group of people who claim to be called upon to heal.
“We want to see the law take its course. This guy provides financial support to these kids. And that was his way of bringing them back to him. If you give money to a child, it’s difficult for them to speak out.
“These things have happened, but people have kept silent, believing that if you expose a Sangoma you will be bewitched.”
Soon after the rape saga, angry members of the community destroyed the indumba, the building and all that it contained.
The Sangoma’s mother said he was sentenced after a lengthy three-year trial. He was released on parole after serving nine of his 15 years.
She said her son became a fully-qualified gobela who had been helping people of all ages with their calling.
“They took everything, including muthi. He has beautiful gifts from people he has helped. Now those are all gone,” said the 66-year-old mother.