Kabelo Tlhabanelo

About 170 sangomas, traditional healers, and prophets gathered at a community hall in Majwemasweu in the Free State to ask the ancestors for help to fight GBV in the town.

The night vigil on Saturday night was also to fight Covid-19 and HIV.

Resident Phallo Modisenyane, 39, told Scrolla.Africa that GBV, currently being highlighted in The 16 Days of Activism for No Violence against Women and Children campaign, remains a serious problem. 

“The police are doing everything in their power to fight this crime, but despite the campaign we are still hearing of new cases every day,” said Phallo.

“The ancestors have turned their backs on us. We need to remember them and ask for their help. We attended the all night prayers with them and hope things will change for the better.”

Organization for African Herbalist president Mamoya Rakauoane, from Botshabelo, said the sangomas were from surrounding Free State towns. 

“As traditional healers, sangomas and prophets, we saw the need to pull up our socks and gather to show that women and children abuse is not acceptable in the community. We held all night prayers for the end of the troubles and the challenges we have. People are killing their partners and children,” he said. 

He said women are emotionally and physically abused and are scared to report it to the authorities. 

“We pray for them to be given strength to report and not drop charges. We appeased the ancestors and asked for their intervention.”