A Harare man lost $2 000 to a self-proclaimed traditional healer who allegedly lured him into a graveyard ritual claiming he would make his money multiply to $7 000 within a few days. The traditional healer, Kasimu Hasani Saidi of Kaserera Drive, Rugare, appeared before Harare magistrate Ms Rekina Dzikiti on Wednesday facing charges of fraud.
Saidi pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Prosecutor Ms Venancia Mtake alleged that sometime in December last year, Francisco Figuera came across a newspaper advertisement where Saidi claimed to solve financial problems.
It is alleged that Figuera phoned and was invited to Rugare where Saidi allegedly told him that he would use herbs to make his money multiply.
The court heard that Saidi asked Figuera to bring $4 000 and a bag in which to place the money so that it would multiply to $7 000 after herbs were applied.
After two weeks, Figuera managed to raise $800 which he gave to Saidi who took him to Granville Cem- etery.
It is alleged that upon arrival at the cemetery, Saidi took Figuera to a grave where he ordered him to change the money into another bag suitable for the rituals.
The money was placed on the grave before the pair left.
On January 5, Figuera managed to raise another $1 200 and gave it to Saidi before proceeding to the same grave. It is alleged that Figuera returned to Saidi expecting to collect $7 000, but he was nowhere to be seen after he was said to have left for Malawi to collect more herbs.
Efforts to locate Saidi after the date he was expected back in the country were fruitless, prompting Figuera to report the matter to the police.
Saidi was arrested in Kuwadzana following police investigations and only $20 was recovered.