Investigations by the local authorities on missing parts of bodies stashed  in the morgue at Marondera Hospital revealed that rats are responsible for the mutilation. But some residents of Marondera, a town 72 km east of Harare, insist it is satanism. And they pressured the health authorities to fire suspects.

Two men were fired but were later reinstated after the failure by the authorities to establish whether the accused were indeed satanists, as was alleged by the public. The mayor of Marondera Farai Nyandoro told that the case almost frightened people from bringing bodies of their late beloved to the mortuary at the biggest public hospital in Mashonaland East. “People have came to our offices and reported that there are satanists at the hospital. So I went with the town’s health officials and investigated the matter. We, however, discovered that the refrigerators
at the mortuary are down and, as a result, rats have invaded the place and are eating body parts,” said Nyandoro.

But in a country, where bodies are mutilated for ritual purposes and to concoct magic potions, missing noses, ears and even privates are just too ghastly to give credit to rats. “I think it’s satanism. It’s the spirit of the devil because rats that are not possessed by the devil do not eat body parts,” said Eric Marwizi, a Christian resident of the town. 

Fiona Tserua, another local, said that bodies at the morgue were turning green as they went bad due to the poor storage. “When we went to collect the body of our relative who had passed away
we found bodies piled on top of each other while some were going green. The authorities at the hospital told us that they would deal with the matter.”

Efforts to get a comment from Marondera Hospital management were fruitless. The hospital has since gone to tender, inviting companies to refurbish the mortuary. Ian Kay, the House of Assembly representative for Marondera Central, where the hospital is located, said he has also visited the medical institution to assess the situation but could not assist. The hospital management said that the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare was going to assist in the refurbishing of the hospital.