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Leader of Seychelles opposition accused of witchcraft

The leader of the opposition in Seychelles, Patrick Herminie, has been accused of practicing witchcraft, along with seven other people.

The police say that the case is connected to finding two bodies that were dug up from a cemetery on the island of Mahé.

He said that the accusations against him are not true and that they are just trying to make him look bad for political reasons.

Mr Herminie wants to be a candidate in the 2025 presidential election for the United Seychelles Party.

On Monday, a court released him and six others from Seychelles on bail. They had to pay 30,000 Seychelles rupees ($2,100; £1,745) to be free. However, a Tanzanian suspect was not released and will remain in custody until the next court date in November.

Mr Herminie and his co-accused are facing charges, as reported by the local media. These charges include having things meant for witchcraft, planning to do witchcraft, and getting services for witchcraft.

The prosecutors say that they have evidence that the name of the opposition leader was mentioned in a message on WhatsApp. The message was exchanged between a person from Seychelles and a suspect from Tanzania, who was arrested on September 21 at the main international airport.

The Tanzanian person was discovered with things linked to witchcraft. These things included stones, black wooden objects, small bottles filled with a dark brown liquid, a mixture of powders, and papers with strange language and symbols that seemed “evil and satanic,” according to the people who found them.

The papers were like the ones found in Catholic churches and other places that were damaged in Mahé, which is the biggest island in Seychelles. The prosecutors also claimed this.

Mr Herminie, who was the leader of Seychelles’ parliament from 2007 to 2016, said to local media that over 40 police officers had searched his party’s offices in the capital city of Victoria on Friday.

He said the police looked for things related to witchcraft like bones, body parts, and things connected to Christianity but didn’t find any.

According to the Seychelles News Agency, Mr. Herminie said that his arrest was like a political performance by President Wavel Ramkalawan. He believes that the president is trying to get rid of people who can challenge him in the 2025 elections.

President Ramkalawan has not said anything about the situation.

Mr Herminie says he doesn’t think witchcraft is real.

In the history of Seychelles, no political party leader has ever been arrested for believing in superstition and witchcraft, and this still remains true today. “He said this is a new thing and it brings shame to Seychelles. ”

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