Elderly woman tortured in POM

An elderly woman was beaten and burnt today in Port Moresby after being accused of practising sorcery.

The attack on the woman, believed to be in her 60s, could have been fatal if it weren’t for quick police intervention.

Loop PNG arrived at the scene of the incident at an area known to settlers as ‘Swamp Side’ between the Gerehu to Nine-Mile Road.

It was at the Simbu Block that the incident took place where the victim, from Mul Village in Gumine, was attacked by men after being accused of practising sorcery by her female neighbour, who hails from Marawaka, Goroka, in Eastern Highlands Province.

According to Inspector Mark Mosinakave, who arrived at the scene, the accused was suspected of removing the heart of the accuser while she was asleep.

“When I came here I saw this old woman she was tied all around her body, hands and feet tied up, and was about to be burnt over the fire.

“Others with hot metal… they were burning her body and she had severe burns to her body. So I contacted the ambulance and they arrived and took her,” said Mosinakave.

He added: “I talked to the locals and I advised them that what they did was uncalled for. It’s criminal in nature. If they suspected her of committing sorcery there are other avenues, they can bring this matter forward and we can solve them.

“What they did by torturing her is against human rights and I condemned their actions.

“They said she took somebody’s heart away, and I said where is that heart? Bring it back.”

Mosinakave condemned the actions of the individuals and is now calling for peace and restraint from retaliators to allow the law to take its course.

“I advised them, the matter is before police and I wouldn’t want anyone to take the law into their own hands because I don’t want anything to escalate after I leave.”

The elderly woman was taken away by a waiting ambulance to receive treatment at a hospital.

In November last year a woman was killed and tortured at Eight-Mile following the death of a young man, which the family claimed was a result of sorcery.

Cedric Patjole
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