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Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Judge Seeks End of Witchcraft Restrictions

A senior High Court judge urged Zimbabwe's government to ease colonial era restrictions on the practice of witchcraft, state-run radio reported Tuesday.

Many here retain strong beliefs in the healing power of spirit mediums -- known as n'angas, or witch doctors -- along with the role of ancestral rites in the nation's cultural life, Judge Maphios Cheda said Monday at the opening of a new judicial year in the second city of Bulawayo.

"The strongly held conviction of belief in witchcraft and traditional healers ... cannot be wished away," Cheda said in the speech quoted on state radio.

He urged amendments to the century-old Witchcraft Suppression Act "in keeping with the popular thinking and beliefs of the majority in this country." Full Story

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