The death of several people in Emakhandeni within a short space of time – under mysterious circumstances – has sparked fear among residents, who suspect the suburb is haunted by evil spirits and needs some form of ritual or spiritual cleansing.

Late last month, three family members – Chipo Mudinzwa (58), her 29-year-old daughter Christine and son Cleopas – died in a mysterious fire. On the day of their burial, Tinashe Zindoga, who stays barely 500m from the fire victims’ house, hanged his son before committing suicide.

According to neighbours, a week before these incidents, a man from the suburb lost his life after being hit by a train. Residents from the suburb are living in fear of their lives as they suspect that these deaths were caused by evil spirits.

“We don’t think we are safe anymore. If this is happening to our neighbours, it is bound to happen to us as well,” Sithabile Mlilo, a resident said.

Darlington Moyo said Emakhandeni residents should take the incidents seriously as the devil was at work trying to wreak havoc among the people.

“Emakhandeni is really under spiritual attack. If we are not careful, it might get worse. When the evil spirits are attacking, people won’t be themselves. That is why all these things are happening. As residents, we should consult traditional healers and prophets to find out what is really happening,” he said.

While many people believe that there are Satanists in neighbouring Cowdray Park suburb, Emakhandeni residents feared the spirit of Satanism and evil spirits had moved to their suburb.

“We always heard such mysterious stories happening in Cowdray Park. This area was always peaceful and now the evil spirits are beginning to move around. Satanists are at work and as Christians, we really need to be strong in our prayers. It won’t be surprising to hear of similar incidents next week. The devil is at work and if we don’t take him seriously, we will lose a lot,” Yvonne Mwale said.

Monwabisi Jawula said mysterious incidents in the area had left residents shaken and people had come up with so many theories to explain the happenings.

“At first we thought the fire victims had some goblins that haunted them to the point of setting the house on fire, but what can we say now that barely 500m from that house, a father kills himself and his son under unclear circumstances? This thing is moving around this area,” he said.

Austin Hlabangane urged churches to hold crusades in the area to cast away evil spirits.

“We really need God’s presence here to cleanse this place from demons and misfortunes,” he said.

Some of the residents recently complained that stones were continuously being thrown onto their roofs, yet they never saw who was hurling them. Ndabezinhle Ntshali said all religious people should come together and pray for the suburb. 

See related reading:

Chitungwiza man confesses to satanism, names churches that worship Satan 

Bulawayo pastors up against satanism