ZAMBIA – A 22-year-old traditional healer, who is also a member of Zion Church in Zambia has died after being allegedly buried alive by his church members.
Eastern Province Police Commissioner Geza Lungu, says James Sakala of Mpeta village in Chief Maguyaâ€™s area was allegedly buried alive by his church mates, Lawrence Daka a pastor, Pearson Phiri and Patrick Daka, all of Mtali village in Chief Mwangalaâ€™s area in Chadiza District.
Mr. Lungu has told Phoenix News that the incident occurred on Sunday when Mr. Sakala allegedly went to administer tradition medicine at Zion church at Mtali village as he was practicing as a healer besides his faith.
He explains that after a church service at Zion Church around 14:00hours on the same day, the deceased allegedly went into his spirits and told the church members to dig a sizeable grave for him to be buried to demonstrate how his powers to rise from the grave works, a practice he is believed to have been doing often.
Mr. Lungu said some church members refused but Mr. Sakala insisted and went ahead to personally dig a shallow grave using a hoe he borrowed from the nearby house.
After this process, Mr. Sakala voluntarily jumped into the said grave and shouted at the church members to bury him so that they can witness the resurrection.
The Police Commissioner said one of the church members identified as Innocent Phiri had witnessed the deceased being buried and resurrecting to life and on the basis of the assurance, some 3 church members decided to bury the victim alive in the grave of approximately two meters deep and of knee height.
Mr. Lungu says church members later started singing in the hope that Mr. Sakala would resurrect, but to no avail after which they decided to try and rescue him by way of un-burying him, only to discover that the victim had suffocated.
He says police visited the scene of crime and that upon inspection of the body, it was found to be in a bad state as it was believed to have been exposed to sunlight and heavy rains while waiting for the police to arrive.
Mr. Lungu says the body has been buried and the grave has been marked awaiting postmortem and that a manhunt for the three suspects is underway.
Credit: Zambia Accurate Information
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