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Predators and vultures in Shakaola, Kenya

336 dead in the forest, sadly more to come

19-06-2023 by Freddie del Curatolo

The dead are no longer counted in Shakaola.
The trickle of funeral data transmitted on an almost daily basis is reminiscent of the sad custom of the Covid period. After the latest exhumations, we have arrived at 336 lifeless bodies, buried like the others, in mass graves. Without a name, without the slightest reference for families and relatives. So far, only 19 of them have been given a dignified burial, for 93 others the results of DNA tests are awaited, for others, of which only piles of bones remain, identification seems impossible. On all of them, the signs of impressive malnutrition, on some (including, horror, children) those of strangulation. According to the prosecution, the preacher Paul Mackenzie had not only convinced them to abstain from food and drink in order to 'see Jesus in paradise' as soon as possible before Satan took over the Earth and their souls, but through some alleged accomplices, including his wife Rhoda Maweu, who is also under arrest along with 15 others, he speeded up the process.

In the forest of Shakaola, sixty kilometres from Malindi along the road that leads to the Tsavo East National Park, which is currently being repopulated by tourists, the mass graves discovered number at least thirty, and according to the Red Cross, the bodies to be recovered could exceed 600. In fact, there are many missing persons claimed by their relatives who are believed to have joined Mackenzie's 'International Church of Good News'.

Now the search, now in its third phase since 17 April, has once again been suspended to allow the government's team of anatomical pathologists to complete autopsy examinations to shed more light on what the public calls 'the Shakaola massacre'.
Meanwhile, the judicial process is taking its course. Sixty-five of the 95 followers of the 'fasting' sect who were recovered alive in the forest have been charged by the Mombasa Preliminary Examination Judge with 'attempted suicide', an offence that is punishable with imprisonment in Kenya. Some of them, in more than critical health condition, failed to appear in court or fainted at the entrance. They were continuing their abstinence, which for some became a hunger strike in protest against the arrest and the charges brought against their 'guru'.

Upon learning of the risk of conviction, almost all of them agreed to go back on food and be admitted to some sort of community, where the judge ordered a psychiatric evaluation for them.
There will be a lot of work for institutions to do in the future, under the psychological aspect for all those who come dangerously close to the new gurus who use weapons like youtube and tik-tok to convince believers to become followers. Where in other countries and other cultures other methods are used, such as the mirage of earnings and unbridled luxury, here the apparently serious and wholesome values and the naivety of poor people are still leveraged. Unfortunately, at the top of the pyramid, there are always fraudsters and shiny, mad predators, while the vultures who created the logic of appearance through social media and video platforms, continue to hover undisturbed over human carcasses.

TAGS: mortishakaolacultosettacorpifosse comunipredicatore

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