More ‘healers’ arrested

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Selma Ikela

Windhoek-Three Ugandan traditional healers who were arrested in Khomasdal at their rented home on Tuesday are expected to appear in court today on multiple counts of fraud and theft under false pretences.

They were arrested for being illegally in Namibia and working without work permits, as well as for contravening the health act by administering medicine and injecting people without authorisation.

Among the three suspects is a 29-year-old woman from Mulago in Uganda. The other two suspects are two males, aged 27 and 28, who are also Ugandan.

The woman operates under the name ‘Mama Tee’ and prints leaflets advertising her services that are distributed in town. She also operated under names such as Mama Buge, Prof Jomo and Dr Damba.

Mama Tee, who has many clients as per her cellphone’s SMS and Whatsapp chat records, allegedly solves problems ranging from people who want to sacrifice other human beings, to manhood problems and manhood enlargement; and wins court cases, lottos and facilitates abortion, amongst others.

In her cellphone conversations, clients tell Mama Tee they want healing for erectile dysfunction, assistance to restore a relationship, help with solving their joblessness and promotion at work, and abortion, amongst others.
However, after police questioning, Mama Tee said she wasn’t a real healer and that it was the devil using her (to lie that she is a healer). She told the police she gets her traditional medication in Katima Mulilo after it is brought in from Zambia.

The police also confiscated N$37,500 found in the woman’s bedroom, as well as cellphones with crucial information and other electronic devices.

The police said that N$200,000 was transacted out of the country and sent to the suspects’ relatives outside Namibia.

So far six Ugandans have been arrested as fake healers by the Namibian Police. A trio first appeared in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court in July on almost similar charges. They were Kikabi Jamada, Ismail Kisenyi and Dirisa Almanda Waswa.

On Tuesday the police also confiscated items used during healing ceremonies such as animal horns and skin, a dead bird, a snake, eggs placed in a bottle, syringes, tablets, candles, photographs, amongst many others.
During a media briefing yesterday Nampol spokesperson Deputy Commissioner Edwin Kanguatjivi stated the suspects are likely to appear in court today.

Kanguatjivi said that 14 syringes and needles were found among the suspects’ goods.
“What they inject and what it is used for it is not known or what kind of substance they use to inject people. I tried to look for the name of the manufacturer of various tablets found here, but maybe when the medical professionals see this they will know,” said Kanguatjivi.

He added that the healers administered medication while they are not medical professionals and that potential clients were doing this at their own risks.

During Tuesday’s arrest, Mama Tee lied about her country of origin and her name. She also told the police she stood in as a healer for a friend who was out of town but her cellphone revealed otherwise.

After Mama Tee refused to open her bedroom, the police called the house owner to open the door, but he was shocked to find what his house had been turned into.

The owner, who requested anonymity, showed New Era that Mama Tee signed a one-year rental contract for N$9,500 per month for the three-bedroom house.

“I am actually shocked to see such things. The agent was supposed to screen these people. I am really shocked to the extent that I have terminated their contract. I can’t have such people in my house. I have to evict them with immediate effect,” said the owner.

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