Resident forced to quit village over Witchcraft Allegations

2446 Views Kabale, Western Region, Uganda

In short
A resident of Omurusabena, Nyabikoni was forced to leave her home on Friday, 20th July after fellow villagers accused her of practicing witchcraft. The resident, Lydia Mbabazi was given hours to pack her belongings and vacate her home after several villagers testified to seeing her on at least two occasions slaughtering cats.

A resident of Omurusabena, Nyabikoni was forced to leave her home on Friday, 20th July after fellow villagers accused her of practicing witchcraft. The resident, Lydia Mbabazi was given hours to pack her belongings and vacate her home after several villagers testified to seeing her on at least two occasions slaughtering cats.

The residents of Omurusabena Cell, Nyabikoni ward, Central Division led by Muhereza Twahirwa confronted Mbabazi with the accusations on Friday afternoon at her home. The group of about 35 residents accused Mbabazi of practicing witchcraft.
They also accused Mbabazi of refusing to pay back money she had received from a women’s group, Orusabena development group, amounting to UGX 580,000. They claimed that whenever she was reminded of the debt, she threatened to kill the person.

The situation became tenser when a group defending Mbabazi came to her rescue led by Joanita Ahereza. Ahereza insisted that Mbabazi was innocent of the charges. This angered Mbabazi’s accusers who threatened to lynch her if she did not leave their village.

When another Mbabazi defender Albert Taremwa suggested that it was some people harbouring ill will towards the accused who were responsible for the accusations, the confrontation between the two groups turned physical.

This prompted Bruce Anguzu, the Nyabikoni ward local two chairperson, to intervene and advise that the matter be referred to Kabale Central Police post.

The personal intervention of Kabale Central Police post in charge Godfrey Biryomumaisho did not deter the residents from forcing Lydia Mbabazi to leave the village. Biryomumaisho decried the forceful eviction of Mbabazi from the village and asked residents to always report their grievances to the police instead of taking the law into their own hands.