ILLEGAL initiation schools in the Eastern Cape remain a big headache.

This winter six initiates have died and authorities have rescued more than 100 boys so far.

Of the six that died, two were from legal initiation schools.

Corporate governance and traditional affairs spokesman Mamkeli Ngam said the six were aged between 11 and 17. “Three were from Nyandeni, one from Flagstaff, one from Elundini and one from Mthatha. We are waiting for the post-mortem results but suspect pneumonia, assault, dehydration and blood poisoning as possible causes.”

Ngam said MEC Fikile Xasa was in the Ntlaza area near Mthatha on Friday to visit hospitalised initiates.

Government has urged all stakeholders, especially law enforcement, to help keep illegal schools under control.

Last year Xasa threatened the headman and chiefs that heads would roll if illegal schools were run in their areas. In keeping with the threat, six people including a headman have been bust.

“The headman was charged with running an illegal school while the others were charged with possession of dagga and stolen livestock,” Ngam said.

  • Meanwhile, two notorious ingcibi are said to be circumcising boys again. Mtshayina Ndoda from Libode and another ingcibi from Bizana were bust in December for operating illegally.

Ndoda was released once again after being bust many times.

He has served time for illegal circumcisions and told the SunTeam last year he used to secretly circumcise inmates.

The other ingcibi was released on bail for the murder of an initiate in Bizana in December.

“We are pleading with the SAPS and the NPA to help us in our fight to save our boys by building watertight cases against these men.

“It worries us they are free to do what got them into trouble with the law,” said Xasa.

Lieutenant-Colonel Mzukisi Fatyela confirmed Ndoda was arrested recently, but could not confirm his release.


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