International Journal of Psychology, Sociology and Anthropology

International Journal of Psychology, Sociology and Anthropology ISSN 6740-1317 Vol. 1 (4), pp. 019-024, April, 2013. © International Scholars Journals

Review

Witchcraft as an intriguing phenomenon in Africa: The case of Tanzania

*Benjamin Edwards, Ridhiwani Pinda and Jakaya Garang

Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Dodoma, Dodoma, Tanzania.

E-mail: ben2012@gmail.com

Accepted 30 March, 2013

Abstract

Witchcraft is a topical subject and an intriguing phenomenon in Africa. Thriving on belief systems it baffles and confronts ruling elites with dilemmas on how to deal with it. Tanzania experiences grim consequences by the entrenchment of witchcraft in the country including social exclusion, expulsion and even murder of alleged witches. The legal system copes inadequately with the challenges of witchcraft because it does not accept the reality of witchcraft and the colonial inherited law is a blunt instrument in dealing with the problem. This article charts the history of the law on witchcraft in Tanzania and concludes that witchcraft beliefs are too strong to be driven out by legal methods and instead advocates for the removal of ignorance by introducing a scientific view of the world through [mass] education.

Key words: Witchcraft, bewitching, Tanzania, ordinance, law, commission.