A little laughter | Man pleads with butchery looters to return stolen ‘mamlambo’ snake

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A file image of a python snake.
A file image of a python snake.

Many people have been left in stitches after listening to a viral voice note of a man pleading with people who looted Moses’ butchery store to return a box with a ‘mamlambo’ snake in it.

It is unclear if the man speaking in the voice is serious or is just trying to defuse the anxiety over the unrest, that has left many South Africans worried, with some laughter.

In some parts of African culture, people believe that some small business owners keep snakes, usually referred to as mamlambo, at their stores or homes and this helps bring customers, money and good fortune.

Speaking in broken Zulu, the unidentified man, who says the voice note is directed to residents of ward 28, asks those people who had looted Moses’s butchery to please return a box that had Moses’s snake in it. It is unclear which city the man is from. 

“I’m just passing the message that when people were taking the meat, someone took the snake. Apparently if that snake gets angry, it will blow away our roofs. So, residents I am asking whoever took the snake to return it immediately.

“If you only took the meat because you’re hungry, we understand that but not the snake. Please return the snake to Moses, throw it somewhere close his home or give it to one of his employees and Moses will fetch.

“They say if the snake gets angry wherever it is, it will cause havoc.

“I know some of us were there looting, I don’t know who you are but please return the box with the snake. Even if you leave it at his gate, Moses and that snake have been together for a long time. We don’t want the mamlambo (snake) to destroy our houses.

“Let's take the meat and return the snake. You can even leave the snake here at my gate, but just send me a message telling me you left it here because I don’t want any surprises. I’ll then call Moses to fetch his animal,” the man said in his voice note that is making the rounds on social networks.

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