As Boko Haram continues to ravage northern Cameroon, the
country is being urged by one of its political leaders to turn to
witchraft to combat terrorism. Midjiyawa Bakari, governor of the far
northern region of the country is reported to have said that witchcraft
will be an effective weapon against Islamic terrorism devastating the
“We expect every village to have brilliant actions in this
direction,” he said. “We want to hear that this or that village has
wiped out or limited the sect’s damage through witchcraft. Fight for
President Paul Biya, Cameroonian President had earlier charged
Cameroonians to use witchcraft against Boko Haram, contradicting the law
that had made witchcraft and black magic illegal in Cameroun with
penalties of 10 years in prison.
In Mora, a remote mountainous district in the Far Northern region
near Nigeria, the people are desperate to try anything against Boko
Haram. The report by Public Radio International (PRI) says hundreds of
militia fighters patronise “marabouts,” a popular name for witchdoctors
or Juju priests in Cameroon, for charms and talismans for protection in
the battle with the insurgents. “Since I have this gris-gris, I have no
problem,” said Mohamad Ahmed, a gym teacher and member of a local
militia in Mora, with a small cloth bag typically worn around his wrist.
The talisman they carry are usually “magic” objects and paper
inscribed with verses from the Koran, or any other holy scriptures.
Gris-gris, though an African charm, is more commonly identified with
voodoo practices in the Caribbean.
“It is so powerful,” said Ahmed. “I put it on at the moment I go into
the field of fighting. The fetish protects its wearer. If someone
shoots at you, the bullets have no effect. They fall on the ground like
Ahmed however confessed that he has not been shot at to
test the charm.
Observers have noted the failure of the Army to stem the rampage of the
Islamic terrorist group destroying the lives and existence of the
communities in northern Cameroon which has resulted in this frustration.
A community Church Pastor, Alfred Ndechech in Kerewa, a community
bordering Nigeria, said to Global Christian News, “We have continued to
preach to people and ask them to look up to God and depend on Jesus, but
people want results instantly… they want powers that they think will do
magic now, forgetting that there is no other power apart from Christ.”
Baba Boukar, a marabout, claimed that “Some members of the vigilance
committees now have the ability to mystically eat the hearts of enemies
or make them slaves by pronouncing incantations,” said Boukar.