A 59-YEAR-OLD nurse has accused a 'witch doctor' of swindling her of a house in Marula in Windhoek in 2014 after convincing her that he needed to drive out evil spirits. Although Elizabeth Neis has reported the matter to the police and there is a pending High Court case over the issue, the witch doctor, Kennedy Thiongo-Kasume, still lives in the house and has even erected a high wall and installed CCTV.
Neis said her late sister introduced her to Thiongo-Kasume when she wanted help to recover N$100 000 she had lent a patient to pay a hospital bill.
To help the patient, the sympathetic Neis took out a loan on the patient's behalf, but the beneficiary disappeared without paying back the money.
Neis then approached Thiongo-Kasume to help recover the money as well as treat her daughter who was suffering from depression.
She said she believed Thiongo-Kasume because he had sounded convincing.
"He also told me right at the beginning of the consultation that my problem stemmed from the house I lived in, and that I should move out immediately," said Neis.
She said Thiongo-Kasume told her that he needed to move into the house to carry out some exorcism.
According to Neis, Thiongo-Kasume also told her that he would pay her rent once she moved out of the house she had called home for 36 years, and he moved in to drive out the evil spirits that haunted it.
The mother of two then moved into a four-bedroom house in Wanaheda after Thiongo-Kasume made arrangements with the owner.
Neis said she does not know how much the witch doctor agreed to pay in rent, but the family was later kicked out because of non-payment.
She then moved to another house in Donkerhoek, and the witch doctor paid rent for a while, and then stopped.
When she tried to go back to her house, she said, the witch doctor told her that the charms he had used were too strong for her, and that he had to bring in help from Tanzania.
Thiongo-Kasume then offered to buy the house, and that he would pay N$200 000 for it in instalments.
Neis said she had no choice but to sign off the house over into Thiongo-Kasume's girlfriend's name, Josephina Kwalimushe Amutse.
The girlfriend then changed the house ownership into Thiongo-Kasume's name in 2015.
By that time, Neis and her family were staying in Dolam, where she paid N$4 300 rent for a three-bedroom flat.
Neis found another house in Khomasdal that was on sale for N$1,6 million, and Thiongo-Kasume said he would pay for it, and she should sign the agreement of sale.
Thiongo-Kasume did not pay anything, and the owners of the house advised her to open a police case after hearing her story.
The police, Neis said, told her that they could not do anything because she had signed the sale of the house, and advised her to pursue a civil case.
When she realised that her efforts were not yielding any results, Neis broke down.
"I have been seeing a psychologist ever since. I was losing my mind. It was too much to bear. My family told me that I should have known better, and even my daughter was very harsh with me," said Neis.
For her, she said, there were two choices - go to God, or go to the witch doctor.
"I decided to go to God. I seriously started praying," said Neis. "I could have easily taken my own life. I could have lost my job and become addicted to alcohol, but God kept me. Colleagues kept asking me why I sold the house, but they did not know the whole story."
Neis' brother-in-law, Edward !Aoxamub, warned Namibians against consulting witch doctors and pastors who instil fear and insecurity to cheat their victims, especially vulnerable people.
"Most of these cases happen because people are too shy to speak out about them," he said.
Efforts to get hold of Thiongo-Kasume and his girlfriend were unsuccessful yesterday.
Katutura Central constituency councillor Ambrosius Kandjii could not comment since he was attending a funeral, while police spokesperson Edwin Kanguatjivi's phone was of
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