Villagers in fear of occult killers who deal in flesh Ramita Navai in Johannesburg
The man who hacked off nine-year-old Fortune Khumalo's genitals struck as the youngster relieved himself in bushes. Using a machete, the attacker sliced off Fortune's penis and testicles, to sell the body parts to the lucrative traditional medicine - muti- market.
Fortune had become a victim of a crime of the occult that has rocketed in recent years to supply a booming trade in human body parts. He survived the attack but most victims do not and the Government estimates that there could be more than 300 muti murders a year. “The killings are driven by greed,” said Thomas Khumalo, Fortune's father. “People believe using human body parts in medicine can make them rich.”
Fortune's assailant was caught with the genitals wrapped in a towel in his pocket. He planned to sell them to a traditional healer in Johannesburg, where body parts are worth up to £250, and a human head can go for as much as £500.
Fortune is now in constant pain because his family cannot afford the reconstructive surgery he needs.