A CHIPINGE man has been granted a protection order against his three sons and two grandchildren after they labelled his wife a witch.

Gilbert Sithole (66), of Marirangwe village under Chief Mutema, made the application before Chipinge magistrate Joshua Nembaware on Friday.

The magistrate granted the application and ordered both sides to keep peace with each other.

In his application, Sithole said his sons and grandchildren were harassing him and his wife.

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“I am the applicant in this matter and the respondents are my sons and grandsons, namely Lazarus, Joseph, Taurai, Silas and Munyaradzi,” he said.

“The respondents insulted me and my wife with degrading and defamatory words and phrases. They also harass me and my wife. They have harvested our maize fields and took the maize without our consent.

“The respondents have also accused my wife of practising witchcraft. I am, therefore, applying for a protection order.”

However, his eldest son, Lazarus, opposed the application on behalf of the others, saying his father was not telling the truth that it was a traditional healer, who had accused his wife of being a witch.

“The respondents never at any time accused the applicant and his wife of practising witchcraft. It’s the applicant who instructed and accompanied respondents to a traditional healer so that the sickness of my wife is cured. To our surprise, the applicant is the very person who paid the traditional healer’s fees after carrying out the rituals,” Lazarus said.

“The outcome at the traditional healer clearly stated that the applicant’s wife was causing the sickness. The respondents never at any time harassed, shouted or accused the applicant’s wife of practising witchcraft.”

He said the application was a ploy by his father to evade the headman’s court order for his wife to respond to the witchcraft accusations.

“As for the maize, it was harvested by respondents as his children, as he was nursing his wife at hospital, after she claimed that she had drunk ground bottle filings to commit suicide when she heard of the traditional healer’s accusations,” Lazarus said.

“The maize had fallen down and monkeys and termites were destroying it and was never taken, but it’s at applicant’s homestead as per his instruction.”