Are witches stealing Zimbabwe penises?

A prostitute is accused of magically stealing a deadbeat client's privates, then returning them on payment.

By Hank Hyena
Published November 29, 1999 4:00PM (EST)

Nov. 30, 1999

Sorcerers' spells and voodoo hexes are dismissed as hocus-pocus in much of the world, but in Zimbabwe a juju curse is considered a plausible danger.

A suburban Harare, Zimbabwe, prostitute was recently accused of magically stealing her client's penis and testicles after he failed to pay her $1.60 fornication fee, notes the Nov. 15 Herald Reporter. The married man excused himself after intercourse with her to use an outdoor toilet, but he never returned.

The next morning, the swindler entered another public lavatory at the Mbare Musica bus station, where he discovered that his sex organs had vanished! Dismayed by this dislocation, he began screaming and running around the crowded terminal, clutching his smooth crotch. Police officers dragged him to the local station, where he related his sad tale and displayed his empty groin as proof.

The vengeful hooker was summarily ushered in to explain the genitalia absence. She informed her interrogators that the lost apparatus would be returned the following day if the man apologized for his behavior and paid her for the sexual services that he had received, plus interest. Contritely, the man obeyed.

The next morning he joyously returned to the constabulary to confirm to the curious and concerned police that he had indeed woken up fully intact.

Belief in Zimbabwe black magic extends to all races, suggests an article in the Nov. 7 Africa News. Richard Wolton, a white farmer, hired seven n'angas (traditional healers) to banish from his property any witches who might be mysteriously killing his farm workers. The n'angas located an abundance of ominous objects that they claimed were used in nocturnal witchcraft activities. The confiscated juju junk included owls, snakes, goblins and a human penis.

Was the latter from another john who dared to stiff a prostitute?

Hank Hyena

Hank Hyena is a former columnist for SF Gate, and a frequent contributor to Salon.

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