Witchcraft Violence and the South African Law

Witchcraft accusations and violence are generating new forms of popular ‘justice' that threaten to destabilize the state's administration of justice. What is to be done?
Date Published :
March 2012
Publisher :
Protea Boekhuis
Editor :
Gordon Chavunkuka, John Hund, Credo Mutwa
Format Available    QuantityPrice
ISBN : 9781869190507

In stock


Whole villages of alleged witches have been set up under the protection of the police and hardly a day goes by without a witchcraft killing being reported by the media. The South African Witchcraft Suppression Act was meant to suppress beliefs in witchcraft but, on the contrary, the Act has lead to an increase in witchcraft violence. Witchcraft accusations and violence are generating new forms of popular ‘justice’ that threaten to destabilize the state’s administration of justice. What is to be done?” This text is the lead editor’s and others’ response to the problem. From within government circles appreciation came Dr Mathole Motshekga, a member of the Gauteng Provincial government, who said 'This volume raises the discussion of the problem to a new level by comprehensively exploring all aspects of it in an interdisciplinary context. [It] will turn up the heat on government to take action.' While situation is unique, it has been studied by many scholars as all countries have problems with unwanted people. This is the bane of all lawmakers; how much is too much? Mass hysteria occurs in all peoples, this a well-documented case. Other contributors include: Veronique Faurev: Research Officer, Noire, Bordeaux, France; Johannes Harnischfeger: Professor of Political Sociology, University of Hamburg; Anthony Minnaar: Professor and Director, Institute for Human Rights and Criminal Justice Studies, Technikon South Africa; Isak Niehaus: Professor of Anthropology, University of Pretoria; Seth A. Nthai: Former Minister of Safety and Security, Northern Province of South Africa; N. V. Ralushai: Former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Venda; Chairman of the (Ralushai) Commission of Inquiry into Witchcraft Violence and Ritual Murders in the Northern Province of South Africa.

About The Author

GORDON CHAVUNKUKA is Former Principal of the University of Zimbabwe and President of the Zimbabwe National Healers’ Association.

CREDO MUTWA is a sangoma, a spiritual leader.

More from this publisher