Governor Ongwae appoints taskforce to probe witchcraft crisis in Kisii
Kisii Governor James Ongwae has inaugurated a task force that will investigate the lynching of four elderly women over suspicion that they were involved in witchcraft in Marani last week.
The Members of the task force include, Samuel Bosire (Abagusii cultural and development council secretary), Dennis Ombachi (MCA Marani ward), Dr. Richard Onkware (Director, Public Health), Obino Nyambane (Director, Culture), Director Lands department, Florence Abuya (Maendeleo ya wanawake), Kevin Mamboleo (youth), and representatives of the Human rights organizations; Kerubo Abuya, Catherine Nyamato and advocate Harun Ndubi.
Speaking during the inauguration, Ongwae said the taskforce will have one month to identify the extent of the problem in the county and come up with mitigation measures, which will be shared with the national government for necessary action.
"We want them to also look at the causes of extra judicial killings. Is the problem? Is it poverty? What is the problem? We want them to look at the security of the citizens. We also want them to look at the challenges facing the youth because most of these deaths were caused by the youth," Ongwae said.
"We want them to give us the mitigation measures going forward. Is it possible for us to create community outline and a few other things. If they are able to identify the extent of this problem then we will work with the national government to ensure that we have cery clear measures that have been put in place."
Kisii Assembly Majority Whip John Ombati, who spoke during the function, condemned the act and wondered why growing old and developing grey hair was being associated with witchcraft, and called for stern action against perpetrators.
"When women living in Kisii reach let’s say 80 years of age people make the assumption that they are witches and that is not good. We should completely outlaw such beliefs and practices," Ombati said.