THE Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education has sought the assistance of traditional leaders and healers to cast away goblins that terrorised teachers at Ntenjane Primary School in Bulilima, Matabeleland South.
The teachers have abandoned the school after the goblin attacks.
Matabeleland South acting Provincial Education Director Mr Lifias Masukume confirmed the development yesterday.
He said he has instructed Bulilima District Schools Inspector, Ms Evelyn Ncube, to engage the District Developmment Co-ordinator Mr Nyasha Majonga and traditional leaders over the matter.
“This is a very difficult and sensitive matter. These issues of goblins cannot be proven scientifically, neither can they be dismissed. So, in order to protect the teachers and the pupils too, there is need to approach the matter carefully. I got a call with regards to the matter yesterday (Wednesday) that teachers are running away from school and I have since engaged the District Schools Inspector.
“I told her to get hold of the District Administrator so that they look for the traditional leaders who are the owners of the place, so that they can find traditional healers who will know how to appease the spirits or chase away whatever it is that is troubling teachers there,” he said.
Mr Masukume said similar occurrences had been dealt with in the past and the teachers’ claims could not be dismissed as false without investigations.
He said the ministry could not deal with the matter alone as it has no jurisdiction over spiritual matters and had to engage community leaders who know the history of the area, the religious beliefs of the people and the ceremonies that needed to be conducted as per the culture of respective areas.
“This is not the first time we have received such reports. Although outcomes have been different after investigations, we have dealt with a number of similar circumstances around different schools in the past.
“We had a similar story at Gohole School about goblins attacking teachers, more recently, there were reports at Minda School of unseen objects which were throwing stones into hostels. However, it later turned out in this particular case (Minda School) that it was naughty boys who were hurling stones at the girls’ dormitories,” said Mr Masukume.
“We however, cannot rule out such spiritual things being true in other schools. As a ministry, we do not have the powers to preside over such, therefore we will hand over such matters to community leaders to engage those with the powers to deal with the spiritual realm.
“It is sensitive, and we want to ensure that the workplace is a safe environment for all. We do not want a situation where we fail to address matters and no teacher wants to be deployed to a school. Hopefully this is addressed urgently and teachers can go back to their work stations.”
Teachers who spoke to Chronicle on condition of anonymity swore that they were not going back to the school following their ordeals. “We are now victims of escalating witchcraft and goblins that storm workstations from the world of evil to unleash spine-chilling fears and a reign of terror. I left in a rush and left all my belongings. I am not going back to that place,” said one teacher in a message sent to this publication.
Another said on many occasions, she would mysteriously wake up lying on the floor yet she would have slept on the bed the previous night.
“I sleep on my bed daily; however, I wake up almost daily on the floor, with my blankets and everything. I have had enough of it. I asked my pastor to pray about it and it stopped for a while. It has started. There is no way I am going back. Public Service Commission will have to make a plan for us,” she said.
Some teachers said they would find their dishes washed in the morning, while some found strange objects in their quarters such as fresh goatskins.
“I wear my underwear when I sleep, but when I wake up, it is washed and is hung to dry on the washing line. It happened for two consecutive days and I told my husband about it. He came to pick me at school and scolded me for not telling him the first time it happened,” she said.