What’s behind children being cast as witches in Nigeria

The rescue of a two-year-old Nigerian child has attracted extensive social and online media coverage  across the world. Abandoned by his family after being accused of being a witch, the boy was saved by an aid worker who found him in Uyo, southeast Nigeria. The boy, known as Hope, is said to have been riddled with worms and had to have daily blood transfusions to be revived.

The unfortunate truth is that Hope is one of only a lucky few who survive the neglect, abuse, and physical and mental health insults that arise from the stigma created by child witch hunting in Nigeria.

Belief in witchcraft is central in Nigeria society – particularly in the Niger Delta region. Researchers have especially focused on my people, the Ibibio of southeastern Nigeria.

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