Acornhoek police are investigating cases of arson and intimidation, among other crimes, after residents of Arthur City in Mpumalanga vandalised and torched homes of community members on Saturday accusing them of practising witchcraft, the Letaba Herald reports.
“We received information that one of the suspects went to one of the victims’ houses, where it’s alleged that on arrival he accused the victim of witchcraft, thereafter he went out to blow a whistle to call the community members who came and started to throw stones at the house and began burning a total of five homes,” stated Acornhoek police spokesperson Captain Mpho Nonyane.
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One of the victims of 69-year-old Ruth Mambane claims the attack on her family is based on jealousy. “This place is not good for us, I have left my livestock at home, now people are busy ploughing, I have missed out.”
A Grade 12 learner, Charmaine Moagi, whose family is among those that have been forcefully removed from Arthur City, explained how the disruption has affected her exams. “I have gone to the exam room without studying, because I didn’t get time to study, and this affected me a lot because I am failing.”
The Bushbuckridge local municipality condemned the attack on the five families. The municipality promised to provide accommodation and food to the five families. In the meantime, they are currently housed at the Acornhoek police station.