Chaos erupts as grave signs disappear from graveyard a week after being erected

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MYSTERY surrounds the disappearance of grave signs from a Chimanimani family’s graveyard barely a week after they were erected.

The graves were also desecrated, thereby forcing the family members to suspect that witchcraft is at play.

The signs which carried the epitaphs of the late family members were later found along a nearby river, placed in the order of the people’s deaths.

The oldest grave in the cemetery is that of Jambwa Shatirwa Chikarati who died in 1962.

She was born in 1880.

The other graves that were desecrated are those of Charles Shumba Chikarati who died in 2016, Gabriel Shumba Chikarati who passed on in 2009, and Godfrey Shumba who died in 2016.

The Chikarati family tried to keep the matter under wraps even after the discovery of the grave signs along a nearby river.

However, Acting Chief Saurombe got wind of the bizarre developments and recently summoned Jimmy, Nelson, Governor and Wilson Chikarati to his court.

Other Chikarati family members from Mutakura Village suspect that one of the four elderly men was responsible for defiling the graveyard.

According to the family members, not even a single grave at the family’s graveyard had a tombstone as it is considered taboo for them to erect one.

However, all hell broke loose when tombstones were erected on the aforementioned four graves without the knowledge of other family members last month.

“Before this happened, we had a heated feud with our uncles, particularly Wilson Chikarati, because he refused to sanction the process of erecting tombstones on the family graves. We want the chief’s intervention on this issue as we do not understand why we are not allowed to erect tombstones on the graves.

“Wilson keeps on shifting goalposts on the issue and we are now suspecting that some ritualists are benefiting from all this,” said Lloyd Chikarati while testifying before Acting Chief Saurombe’s court.

Acting Chief Saurombe ordered the elderly Chikaratis to hire traditional healers to unravel the mystery.

However, the family’s patriarch, Sekuru Nelson Chikarati, is breathing fire.

“I am interested in finding out the person who defiled my graves. My people were resting peacefully, but the day these young family members erected tombstones on the four graves, all hell broke loose. Their action paved way for witches and wizards to descend on my dead family members.

“That area is sacred, and they should not have trespassed without informing me. I will not part with my money to bring someone who will accuse me of defiling the graves,” he blatantly told the court.

Governor Chikarati who led the team that erected the tombstones on the graves begged for forgiveness from Sekuru Chikarati for not following the proper channels when they tombstones were erected.

“My uncles made financial contributions as they wanted the tombstones to be erected on their siblings’ graves. I did not know that my actions would lend me in hot soup as I am now standing accused of foul play. However, someone among us defiled the graves and should be exposed,” he said.

Harsh words were exchanged by the family members during the court session.

The family will be back at Acting Chief Saurombe’s court before the end of this year.

Acting Chief Saurombe fined the family four goats for defiling his land and trying to conceal the whole issue.

“After we have established the real culprit, he will be fined accordingly before the signs are put back on their respective graves,” said Acting Chief Saurombe.

– Manica Post


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