Tanzania Daily News (Dar es Salaam)

11 August 2014

Tanzania: Coast Police Rubbish Reports On Skinning of People

Kibaha — POLICE in Coast Region have refuted media reports about the skinning of people in Mkuranga District, dismissing them as mere fabrication.

Acting Coast Regional Police Commander (RPC), Mr Athumani Mwambalaswa, told reporters in his office that the story which appeared in a local tabloid in its yesterday issue headlined, 'Uchunaji ngozi waibuka Mkuranga' (Skinning of people resurfaces in Mkuranga) carried no truth.

"The truth is that the person by the name of Hamisi Mahimbwa, who was a resident of Dondo village in Mkuranga District, was found in the bush with his body severely burnt.

The villagers rushed into the bush after hearing him crying, asking for help. The villagers then carried him to a health centre for treatment," he said.

Mr Mwambalaswa went on to explain that while Mahimbwa was still receiving treatment, at about 5 am in the morning he died from the severe burns on his body.

A report about his death was recorded in police file number MK/IR/1202/2014 which was opened to facilitate further investigate into the death. "After the file was opened, the police, in collaboration with security officers and officials from the district medical office, went to the place where the incident had taken place and then to the health centre.

"At Kalole health centre the medical officer performed an examination on the body and took specimens for further investigations before handing the body over to the relatives for burial." he said, adding that at the scene of the incident the officers found the burnt remains of Matimbwa's pair of trousers and a T-Shirt, together with sandals, a match box and a bottle which smelt of petrol.

Expounding, he said at the scene there was no any indication of violent acts, adding that the villagers who had gone to offer help were told by Mahimbwa himself that he had been burnt, without explaining who had done it.

"The police have interrogated the guardian of the late Mahimbwa, who said that Mahimbwa had been suffering from epilepsy for 17 years. His guardian also pointed out that the late Mahimbwa was heard murmuring that he was dying after being burnt," he added.

Mkuranga and all Coast Region residents are working hard to make sure peace is maintained in all the areas. There is no cause whatsoever for alarm," Mr Mwambalaswa said.

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