Traditional healer jailed for illegal possession of elephant tusks

A 34-YEAR-OLD Tsholotsho traditional healer has been jailed nine years for illegal possession of two elephant tusks, which he claimed were for his healing business.


Toni Maphosa claimed that he picked the pieces of ivory in the bush and used them in his bone-casting rituals in healing sessions.

He pleaded guilty to possession of raw ivory, when he appeared before Hwange magistrate, Rose Dube recently.

“I picked the ivory in the bush and I was keeping it because I wanted to use it since I am a traditional healer,” he said.

In mitigation, he begged the court to give him an option to pay a fine, saying he had money and he looked shocked when the magistrate sentenced him to an effective mandatory nine years in jail.

For the State, Loveness Maseko said the ivory weighed 0,765 kg.

It was the State’s case that an anti-poaching team comprising rangers from the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority received a tip-off that the accused was in possession of ivory.

“The accused was then found with two pieces of ivory, but could not produce a licence authorising him to have them.

Upon his arrest, the court heard, Maphosa said he had picked the ivory in the bush and was keeping it, so he could clean them for use in his traditional healing business.

Recently, two people were also jailed nine years each for illegal possession of three pieces of ivory valued at $900 and 270 grammes of cyanide.

David Ndlovu (42) and Nkathazo Penga (33) confessed to killing five jumbos by lacing oranges with the deadly cyanide, when they were arrested on July 4 at Cross Dete, where they were selling the ivory.


  1. mgobhozi wezintabeni

    This poor peasant is driven by poverty and starvation to resort to this type of crime.The wild life management is equally to blame for failure to monitor the movement of those protected spices and other dangerous animals such as lions.There are instances where these animals leave game parks and destroy the crops as well as livestock of the rural population especially in areas of Beitbridge West such as Swereki,Masera etc where a head of elephants roam freely every rainy season in the process destroying crops of those peasants.In most cases,wild life personnel are reluctant to drive these animals back to the National Parks even if the presence of those animals are reported to them in time.What are the peasants supposed to do when they are faced with such situations?

    1. chapomba wasu

      have you ever heard of something called CAMPFIRE? If not can you please visit Beitbridge RDC and talk to Beatrice and Ncube. I think they will be able to tell you how it works. This will help you know who to blame concerning wild animals.

  2. N’anga iyi yakangoitawo munyama.

  3. chapomba wasu

    In your entire life have you have ever heard of anything called CAMPFIRE?. If not can you please visit Beitbridge RDC and talk to Beatrice and Ncube. I am quite sure that they will be able to explain to you quite well. After this explanation i am sure you will know who to blame concerning the marauding wild animals

  4. but n’anga yakatadza here kuona kuti pane mamhepo achaisimukira?Dai yakagara yarasazve!kana kuti magistrate akotsire mudare kusvika nyaya yaraswa nedare.fake-n’anga iyi.

  5. N’anga huru haizvirume.

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