Men are being advised to take public transportation in Zimbabwe because of high profile cases of women abducting, drugging, and raping hitchhiking males to harvest their sperm for a lucrative black market. Apparently, the sperm is needed for certain "juju" rituals, a traditional rite in many west African cultures often associated with black magic. The use of sperm as a black market commodity has many authorities perplexed. Here's a clip from a BBC report on the situation, quoting Police Superintendent Andrew Phiri of Gweru:
"We have received reports from around the country from different towns and provinces, it's been happening on the highways," he said.
"We are yet to find out the real reason why this is happening. We have heard speculation that it's linked to rituals."
He appealed for witnesses to come forward.
"We need to hear from people who are prepared to tell," the superintendent said.
The semen is believed to be used in rituals to bring success in business, and there are suggestions that the semen is being taken outside the country for sale.
But cultural expert and sociology lecturer Claude Mararikei told the BBC that it was not clear how the semen would be used.
"It's in the area of rituals and magic, which border on secret societies," he said.
"Even researchers don't want to go into that area because you may not come out alive to publish whatever you find out."
In one high profile case, three women and one man were arrested after they were found with a plastic bag containing 31 used and knotted condoms. Seventeen men were allegedly abducted by the trio, drugged, raped, "harvested", and then released naked in the bush. Because Zimbabwe has no laws against women raping men (who knew?) they have been charged with 17 counts of "aggravated indecent assault."
I think if this were happening in America there would a lot more hitchhikers on the streets...
I know a couple of you are just dying to leave comments on this one... (Mooner, Sarge, I'm looking at you...) Before you dash off to a travel agency to investigate a vacation package to Zimbabwe, you might want to consider that the men there fear they will be cursed if their sperm is used in a juju ritual. That might make you want to reconsider your plans.
But it might explain why Rush Limbaugh was caught smuggling Viagra into the Dominican Republic a few years ago. A lot of west African rituals and traditions have spread to the West Indies, you know...