Harare businessman conned into destitution

A former businessman who sold his properties and gave proceeds from the sale to a self proclaimed Dzivaresekwa traditional healer broke down and wept in court while narrating his ordeal before Harare regional magistrate Mr. William Bhila.

The former businessman who allegedly sold three houses, a housing stand and a vehicle under instruction of the healer who received cash from the sale of the properties as payment for a cleansing ceremony.

The complainant, who told the court that he is now a destitute, was allegedly duped by healer Ibrahim Hussein who told him that after the cleansing ceremony, he would get back his money and start a new life.

It was during cross examination of the complainant that he could not contain his emotions and broke down, leading to the adjournment of the court.

It is the state’s case that the former businessman was prejudiced of more than US$85 000 after selling all his valuable property and handing over the money to Hussein.

Allegations against Hussein and three others arose after the death of the complainant’s daughter in May 2008.

The complainant then sought the services of a traditional healer to find the cause of his daughter’s death, and a newspaper advertisement led him to Hussein in Dzivarasekwa.

The complainant, who was desperate for assistance, was told instructions through an alleged supernatural voice that turned out to be the voice of the third accused person hidden in a drum dug into the ground. A pipe was used to conduct the voice.

Another accused, the fourth, in the case, advised the complainant to follow what he was told to do if he wanted to avoid further harm to his family. The voice instructed the complainant to sell his properties and hand over the money to the traditional healer.

The accused told the complainant that his house was haunted and needed cleansing and at one point, together with the second accused Innocent Murehwa, went to the complaint’s house where they allegedly found and removed a snake.

The complainant was then taken to a cemetery in Chitungwiza where the same trick was used, but this time, the voice came from a man hidden in a grave, leading to the complainant to sell off his properties and give the proceeds to the traditional healer.