Sangoma’s ‘2010’ snake seized

2010-07-05 09:24

A snake apparently used to control the progress of certain teams in

the soccer World Cup has been seized by the Society for the Prevention of

Cruelty to Animals (SPCA).

“The Cape of Good Hope SPCA in Grassy Park rescued a Burmese Rock

Python from a sangoma in Nyanga on (Wednesday),” said SPCA regional spokeswoman

Sarah Scarth.

“It is alleged that the snake was illegally transported from Natal

to Cape Town specifically for the 2010 Fifa World Cup.

“The sangoma is alleged to have accepted money from soccer fans who

requested that he communicates to the ancestors and appeal to them to allow

their specific football team to progress in the game.”

The snake – which was found to be underweight and suffering from

dehydration, mouthrot and pneumonia – was apparently kept in a shack and car

with no food or water.

It has since received medical care.

Daily Sun reported that the sangoma, Siyabonga Mthethwa (25), said

that he was “forced” to hand over the snake, named 2010.

“2010 is my snake and I will teach them a lesson. They say a black

man can’t carry a snake.”

Mthethwa alleged that the SPCA was not familiar with


“Everything I said does not make sense to them.”

Mthethwa said that the snake was “troublesome” when he was taken


“I know that he will give them many problems. I will make him

disappear or kill him in their care.”

He said the snake would not “last long” without him.

“I know everything about his life. I will go home and bring all my

other snakes and see what they will do then.”

The newspaper reported that Mthethwa owns eight other snakes, of

which 2010 was the smallest.

Wildlife Unit inspector and supervisor Brett Glasby said he

believed the sangoma had seven snakes in all but that the others were in


Glasby said the relevant authorities had been notified about the



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