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Witchcraft fears trigger teachers’ exodus

MACKSON WASAMUNU, Bahati
PUPILS at Kasamba Primary School in Bahati constituency in Mansa district are in limbo as teachers have deserted them ostensibly because

of witchcraft.
Only the school headteacher Kelvin Chileshe has remained at the school.
This has prompted Bahati member of Parliament Harry Kalaba to pledge that he will seek the help of pastors to pray for the restoration of harmony at the school.
Mr Kalaba has also suggested to the community that it invites catechists from among them to pray and exorcise the school of all evil.
But when suggestions were made to invite pious men and women of God to pray and exorcise Kasamba Primary School, members of Kasamba community sharply reacted in disapproval with murmuring and grumbling.
According to them, the problem is bigger and a catechist is allegedly suffering ‘bewitchment’ for trying to exorcise the school from the many years of being haunted by sorcerers, witches, ghosts and other supernatural beings.
Kasamba has turned into a sombre and sordid place where the foreboding presence of spine-chilling testimonies of witchcraft and sorcery trails still emerge.
In the past, a female head-teacher and other teachers complained of having sleepless nights and nightmares due to alleged witchcraft at the school and surrounding areas.
Female teachers complained that sometimes, they woke up and found their nightwear on the floor.
Mr Chileshe says the horror of ghosts and witches are so intense that the supernatural echoes can be attested to by teachers abandoning the school houses, opting to live in other areas.
“All the teachers have left and only come to teach from other places. I am the only one living in the school,” Mr Chileshe told Mr Kalaba who is in the area to check on development activities.
Mr Chileshe showed Mr Kalaba a budding tree that village headmen have attributed to activities of the ‘underworld’.
“That tree you see over there was cut down but now it is growing again,” he said.
People in Kasamba, including village headmen say the tree serves as a meeting place for sorcerers and witches and other supernatural beings.
They further claimed the tree in the middle of Kasamba Primary School burns without being consumed.
Mr Kalaba cautioned the Kasamba community against engaging in activities he described as being retrogressive and retarding development.
“These filthy activities are retrogressive and will retard development in this community adding that government workers and others interested and willing to bring about development will start shunning Kasamba,” he said.
Mr Kalaba threatened that if the bizarre occurrences continued, he will not stop teachers and other essential government workers from leaving the area.

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