Malawi man held over paid sex with 100 girls

2016-07-26 13:36
(iStock)

(iStock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Blantyre -Malawi police have arrested an HIV-infected man who was paid to have sex with more than 100 adolescent girls as part of a traditional ritual marking their passage to womanhood, officials said on Tuesday.

Eric Aniva, from the southern district of Nsanje, was held after giving a media interview confessing to have slept with the girls for a fee of between four and seven dollars, paid by each of their families.

The little-known local practice lasts three days and is performed in southern Malawi by men known as "hyenas" at the request of a girl's parents after her first menstruation.

The ritual is believed to train girls to become good wives and to protect them from disease or misfortune that could fall on their families or their village.

"Aniva was arrested on Monday after he was summoned to my office," district commissioner Gift Lapozo told AFP.

In a BBC interview broadcast last week, Aniva confessed to being infected with HIV and sleeping with at least 100 girls without using protection.

"Some girls are just 12 or 13 years old, but I prefer them older," he said.

"All these girls find pleasure in having me as their hyena. They actually are proud and tell other people that this man is a real man, he knows how to please a woman."

It was unclear over how many years Aniva had been a "hyena".

Parents investigated

Malawian President Peter Mutharika had earlier issued a statement ordering Aniva's arrest and calling for an inquiry into the role of the parents involved.

Aniva should "be investigated for exposing the young girls to contracting HIV and further be charged accordingly," Mutharika added.

"Harmful cultural and traditional practices cannot be accepted."

The sexual cleansing ritual is also performed on bereaved widows in Nsanje district to exorcise villages of evil spirits or to prevent another death occurring.

Aniva, who has two wives and was reported to be in his 40s, said a "hyena" was selected by the community based on good morals and that custom did not allow him to use condoms.

"There was nothing else I could have done," one girl told the BBC.

"I had to do it for the sake of my parents. If I'd refused, my family members could be attacked with diseases - even death - so I was scared."

Malawi, which has one of the highest HIV infections in the world, criminalises sex with a person under the age of 16.

If found guilty of underage sex, Aniva could be imprisoned for life.


Read more on:    malawi  |  culture  |  hiv/aids

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.