Saturday, July 20, 2024

Angry Chipata Residents burn down church on Suspicion suspicion


Bethel Church in Chipata Overspill in Lusaka has been burnt by an angry mob on suspicion that there was a Mermaid in the Church.

Police have since arrested eight people for Arson, Proposing Violence and Assault in connection with the incident which happened yesterday between 19:00 hours and 23 20 hours.

Zambia Police spokesperson Esther Katongo says it was reported that the Pastor at the church aged 52 who resides at the same church has a sick son aged 30 who has been sick for some time.

Mrs. Katongo said it is alleged that the mother in law of the Pastor’s son who is sick went with a witch doctor at the house of the Pastor who is the father of the patient and whilst there, the Witchdoctor alleged that there was a Mermaid (ilomba) in the Church and that for him to cure the patient, he needed to go inside the Church to perform some rituals.

“The Pastor refused to allow him and this infuriated the mother inlaw to the patient and the witch doctor who allegedly incited a mob that had gathered. The mob stormed and set the Church ablaze and also razed down the wall fence to the church”, She said.

Mrs. Katongo said the police rushed to the area and managed to contain the situation however one police officer was stoned and he sustained a cut on the left cheek.

Mrs. Katongo said the Church building had its doors and windows damaged while the plastic chairs and some benches were burnt, and some stolen.

She named those arrested as Beatrice Manda aged 47 of Chipata overspill who is the mother in law of the patient, Steve Mwanza aged 29 of Chazanga who a witch doctor involved, Jered Banda aged 25 of Chipata Compound, Michael Mwanza aged 35 of Chipata Overspill and Steve Kalusa aged 35 of Chazanga Compound.

Others are Felix Kasonde aged 27 of Chipata Compound, James Bwalya aged 20 of Chipata Compound and Caleb Ndalemeke aged 45 of Chipata overspill who are all detained in police custody.


  1. We need to improve the Education System in Zambia. the level of ignorance is staggeringly frightening. Marmaids are European mythological beings. They exist in European Fokelore. Pentecostal Prosperity Pastors are the nes misleading people about Marmaid Spirits. This is because many Africans actually think there are Marmaids in the sea such that the devil can use them in Stanism. Marmaid are a work of people’s imaginations.

    • But if they suspected witchcraft, why steal chairs of a wizard? Won’t that bring a bad spell to them the believers in witchcraft? Esther Mwata Katongo strikes me as a straightforward officer doing her job to the best of her ability. No doubt she understands this contradiction in the behaviour of these people. Perhaps the reported mermaid fears mobs.

    • If you grow old in Zambia (60yrs plus), just know your chances of being lynched by a mob for fake reasons of sorcery or something similar are really high! I think ignorance and intolerance is the chief reason and cocktail that fuels such episodes. Our law makers and other organs of government must move quickly to safeguard the public from self destruction …

    • Lusaka Times….just copy and paste…do you even read the stories you copy and paste…Chipata Lusaka or Chipata Town…i cant even understand a word from this article

    • Naimwe ba LT stop confusing your readers. You have a a headline about Chipata an intro about Lusaka, a picture of Chipata Cant you make up your mind where your reporter was? In Eastern Province or in Lusaka? I think that mermaid is in your newsroom confusing you and now you want to transfer the confusion to us

    • Lusaka is full of idyots indeed… who is their minister and Mayor?
      They see a beautiful girl in church, ati ni mermaid.
      Can’t wait to see PF at Convention, maybe Lusaka can be changed!!

  2. One correction: Ilomba (Lilomba in Lozi where this began) is not the same as a Marmaid. The only common thing between them is that they are both Mythological Creatures. An Ilomba (Lilomba) is basically just a big snake, it is not like a Marmaid which is half fish half woman.

  3. It is confusing. The picture is that of Chipata in Eastern Province, whereas in the story, those arrested seem to all herald from Chipata and Chazanga compounds which are both in Lusaka.

  4. Photo shows welcome to chipata Eastern province and the story is for Lusaka what the hell is going on? Why misleading people?

  5. The photo is misleading because it depicts the entrance to Chipata City in Eastern province yet this incident happened in Lusaka. These things are rife in Christian churches, and these are the values that Godfridah Sumaili wants to put in the Constitution through Bill 10. In case you doubt please refer to what P.K Chishala sung about in Elder Pole Pole. Most wizards and witches are found in these churches and don’t think that you’ll go to heaven by merely a member of that church. I am curious to know what moved the mother-in-law to do such as if it were her son that was sick. Sebele aya ni manyengo!

  6. Mermaids are allowed to worship……..ok!!!!

    Group/mob hallucinations, psychosis?? What is going on in the area? What’s worrying these people, are Pastors teaching wrong Christian teachings?

    But on the whole this is fit for a comedy play. A 29 year old whitch doctor gets the crowd excited…….singing a mermaid rap song! Where are the elders in this place?

  7. I’m selling Ilomba eggs just in case you want to buy to win elections.
    Prices for Ilomba eggs are as follows
    Small egg = K5000
    Medium egg = K7000
    Big egg = K10000
    The eggs are selling out as we speak,
    Things like this are happen because there is just too much ignorance and poverty caused by religiosity. Any person who believes stuff like this is mentally impoverished.

    • Muntu wandi hook me up with 5 big eggs. Payment wise, I will pay you after I get a ka money I am expecting from Dandy Crazy, he owes me. Do you also have a rib of a Marmaid? I am forming a Political Party that will just sweep through the elections. People will vote for me even if they don’t want I will use Ilomba and Marmaid accessories.

  8. Church elder Pole-Pole. Very sad to have situations like this subsisting in the 21st Century. Where is the photographic evidence for fs?

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