Kids re­lease,

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News/worldwide - Free­dom Mu­panedemo Mid­lands Bureau

A TRA­DI­TIONAL healer from Gweru who has been “de­tain­ing” two mi­nors for the last four years af­ter their par­ents failed to raise two beasts as pay­ment for treat­ing them yes­ter­day said there were some rites that must be per­formed be­fore she could re­lease the chil­dren.

The in­yanga, Ms Juliet Mpofu, pop­u­larly known as Gogo Maphilisa has been stay­ing with the two mi­nors, aged 11 and 15 since 2013 when their mother, Ms Si­man­gele Zimba, handed them over so that she could treat a rare body and foot dis­ease that was af­flict­ing them.

Gogo Maphilisa said the two mi­nors were not the only “pa­tients” she has kept at her house for such a long pe­riod as there has been oth­ers whom she had kept for more than 10 years.

Ms Zimba re­cently sought po­lice in­ter­ven­tion for her to re­unite with her chil­dren but later back­tracked and said she would al­low Gogo Maphilisa to briefly keep the kids as she looked for money to buy the re­quired beasts.

The kids have also told the po­lice that they were more com­fort­able stay­ing with Gogo Maphilisa than their mother who di­vorced their fa­ther and has since re­mar­ried.

In an in­ter­view yes­ter­day, Gogo Maphilisa said she had no prob­lem re­leas­ing the kids but there were some tra­di­tional rites in­volv­ing an all-night vigil that the par­ents should or­gan­ise as part of wel­com­ing their chil­dren back.

Nikki Ha­ley

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