The catch and release of serious offenders has raised suspicions that criminals are using black magic (juju) to evade prosecution.
Speaking to some Zhombe villagers in a random survey, locals raised serious suspicions of the use of black magic by criminals to evade prosecution.
“Honestly Zhombe is no longer safe because people are being murdered, women are rapped and robbery has also become the order of the day but what baffles me the most is that those criminals are released back into the community and they continue to commit more crimes.
“These people are using black magic, they are using dangerous medicines to evade prosecution in courts,” said an elderly woman who denied being identified.
Councilor Emmanuel Sibanda of ward 9 under Chief Gwesela, also expressed his suspicions of the use of black magic by the youthful offenders.
“These boys are using juju, we know black magic exists and it has always been there ever since.
“We know some wash their faces with urine, others use the accused person’s clothes to perform some magic so that when the person appears in court the medicines play around with the magistrate and they are given bail or they are just released for no apparent reason.
“We have witnessed so many murder cases and crimes here and the criminals are well known even in the community but when they get arrested, they are released within a few days which means something is happening,” said Sibanda.
Zhombe is one of the areas in the Midlands province that has recorded serious murder, robbery and rape cases with some of the suspects already walking scot-free.
One of the sad recent scenarios is that of Primrose Siziba who was murdered in cold blood and the suspect was released on bail a few days later.
The president of the Zimbabwe National Traditional Healers Association George Kandiero admitted that the use of black magic is common in criminals.
“It is a known fact that people use juju to evade prosecution or get out of certain situations but you have to draw a line between good traditional medicines and dark magic.
“We are not disputing the fact that these guys could be using some form of illusion or magic of some sort, it is very possible, but on the other hand, there are also some people who have been wrongly accused and they approach some of our members to get assistance so that they will not go to jail for a crime they did not commit, ” he said.
Furthermore, Kandiero acknowledged the fact that there could be some of the ZINATHA members who are abusing their licenses by assisting criminals.
“We cannot dispute the fact that some of our members are helping some of these people because we do not know what happens behind closed doors.
“Someone tells you that he or she is an expert in curing children’s diseases (anorapa nhova) but you will be surprised to hear that he or she is somewhere as a Tsikamutanda. That is abuse of the license, and that is why we have a legal department to handle such situations,” he said.
Meanwhile, murder, robbery and rape cases have become rampant in Zhombe and the Midlands as a whole and the Zimbabwe Republic Police has held several campaigns in these crime hotspots.
Last week, one Emmanuel Ushe was murdered in Zhombe and his relatives dumbed his coffin at the suspect’s homestead demanding 15 cattle for them to bury their relative.