It is a must for Papua New Guinea communities to have enforcible laws prohibiting accusations relating to cases of sorcery, according to a publication released by PNG National Research Institute (PNG NRI) today.
The study, based on research in the Enga Province, found that police and magistrates intervene only in a few of the cases. It was usually a local leader or a pastor or religious figure that intervenes.
“When mediation is unsuccessful and violence ensues, it is most often a pastor or a religious figure, village leader or immediate family member who intervene to try to stop the violence,” states PNG NRI Issues Paper No.37 on Sorcery accusation-related violence (SARV) in Enga Province.
“It is notable that even when local leaders intervene, they most likely use legalistic arguments that there is no proof of sorcery in that case, or argue that violence is against the law,” the report stated.
Therefore, the report concludes by drawing attention to the need for community laws and safe house facilities and greater investment in finance and personnel for creating an effective way forward in addressing SARV.
The report is a must read for everyone as it reports on the development of an Enga form of sorcery, the extent of SARV, and the main characteristics of the incidents, that churches and government agencies have attempted to respond to with limited success.
The Media Release can be accessed on the PNG NRI website https://www.pngnri.org. Also, follow discussions and updates on our social media platforms:
Authorised for release by:
Dr. Osborne Sanida
PNG NRI Acting Director