Quarry spooked by tokoloshe figurine

2009-03-29 00:00

Hilton business owners were alarmed this weekend when gardeners at the lower Quarry Centre discovered a voodoo-like figurine of a tokoloshe in a tree at the premises.

“There isn’t a single person who’s seen it that hasn’t said it’s the most evil thing they’ve ever seen,” said Andrew Clarke, owner of The Silver Spoon Restaurant and Coffee Café.

The half-metre-tall wooden figurine was discovered on Friday when workers from a garden service were busy preparing a new landscaping project at the centre.

The figurine, which was spiked with numerous nails and bound with rope and material of different shapes and sizes, had glass eyes looking in different directions, a broken horn embedded in its forehead, a cat or dog’s skull tied around its neck and long strands of black hair on its head.

Clarke said business at the complex died down completely from the time they found the figurine until the time it was taken away. “And we’re a restaurant, so it’s weird for us not to have a single table on a Friday night,” he said.

When The Witness was contacted on Friday after the discovery, shop owners and staff at the complex could be heard debating about what to do with the “voodoo doll”. Candice Coleman, an employee of Ian Gordon Property Evaluators, said no one wanted to keep the figurine at the complex overnight, but the owners of the coffee shop later volunteered to keep it.

A staff member at Clarke’s coffee shop suggested that they call a sangoma to remove the figurine.

When the sangoma arrived on Saturday morning, “not even [she] wanted to touch it”.

“She just put it in a bag, performed a cleansing ritual and took it away,” said Clarke. “Since she performed the ritual, there’s been a completely different vibe at the centre.”

Clarke added that business at the centre has “really been slow of late”.

The sangoma, Seli Mthalane from Mooi River, said the figurine was a tokoloshe. She said it was placed there to slow down business.

Mthalane said she would untie the ropes on the figurine so that things can return to normal. She said her ancestors told her to burn it away from her home using traditional medicines.

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