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  • Witch doctors say that obtaining the body parts of albinos will bring luck.

    Witch doctors say that obtaining the body parts of albinos will bring luck. | Photo: Reuters file

Published 31 January 2019

Body parts fetch from US$2,000 for a limb to US$75,000 for a corpse on the black market, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights stated.

Ten children - who had been abducted in December - were found dead and mutilated with body parts missing, Tanzanian authorities have said. "This is all about superstitious beliefs and many believe they will get help from witchcraft," Njombe District Commissioner Ruth Msafiri declared. 

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The gruesome find disclosed that ears, teeth and “private parts” were removed from the bodies of the children, according to a report citing the authorities. Additionally, some of the children were missing limbs.

"These murders are linked to witchcraft practices because that is the trend for such crimes, where herbalists ask people to get these human parts for money rituals," Msafiri added.

The ages of the minors range from 2 to 9 years old.

"We urge all parents and guardians to be on alert and teach their children on how to determine the motives of who is around them," the district commissioner told the BBC. The children went missing while their parents sold produce at a market.

Body parts fetch from US$2,000 for a limb to US$75,000 for a corpse on the black market, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights stated. 

Tanzania authorities indicated that other children are likely still missing.

“We want to identify the perpetrators, but our focus is to educate the traditional practitioners in the area quickly and those in surrounding communities on the need to stop these acts," Msafiri said.

A relative of three of the children was held, while a massive manhunt is in effect to find the perpetrators.

“We have already identified some of the suspects and we will soon take action against them,” Kangi Lugola related in parliament, adding that “our preliminary investigations have established that these incidents are caused by superstitious belief.”

Lugola did not disclose whether the children were albinos or not. But, albino hunters notoriously harvest the blood and body parts - such as hair, genitals and limbs of victims - to make potions.

Witch doctors claim that obtaining the body parts of albinos will bring luck in love, politics, life, business, money, and general good fortune.

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