Tanzania: Secret Ballot to Unravel Child 'Killers'

(file photo).

Bariadi — Lamadi residents in Busega District in Simiyu will today cast secret ballots to identify people who have been involved in mysterious killings of three girls in the area between October last year and April this year.

The directive was issued by Simiyu Regional Commissioner Anthony Mtaka

Some law enforcers based at Lamadi Police Station may find themselves in trouble.

They are accused by residents of defending suspects whom they arrest and then release without taking legal action against them.

Simiyu Regional Commissioner Anthony Mtaka is expected to lead the secret vote after some people suggested doing so during his meeting with residents.

He was accompanied by other members of ther security committee.

A resident of Lamadi, name withheld, said in the presence of the regional commissioner that the children who were killed had their body parts removed, including their private parts.

The girls 9 and 12 were killed in a space of three months.

"What makes us sad and pained is the action by members of the Police Force to arrest and then release the suspects without conducting a thorough investigation into the killings," said one resident, who sought anonymity.

Speaking on the killings, the regional commissioner said the government would conduct a thorough investigation to bring the culprits to book. Mr Mtaka called upon the residents to turn up in big numbers to cast their secret votes as doing so would reveal the perpetrators.

However, Simiyu Regional Police Commander Deustedith Nsimeki said already four suspects were being held by the police force for questioning in connection with the killings. However, he did not go into details on the matter, saying he was avoiding tampering with the probe.

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