“Sperm hunters” prowl Zimbabwe highways in search of hitchhikers

They have been called the “sperm hunters”, a gang of beautiful women in Zimbabwe that travel the streets of Zimbabwe, having sex with unsuspecting, albeit willing men, and harvesting their condoms full of sperm.

News of the promiscuous crew has sparked fears of taboo rituals in Zimbabwe, where the men are preyed upon, drugged, lured and sometimes threatened into repeated bouts of sexual intercourse before they are dumped by the roadside.

“Now, men fear women. They said: ‘we can’t go with you because we don’t trust you’,” 19-year-old Susan Dhliwayo recounted in a Zimbabwe Times article.
The sperm is reportedly used in good luck “ju-ju” rituals.

In one recorded case of sperm hunting, the Nhokwara sisters and one of their boyfriends were charged with the bizarre crime of attacking male hitchhikers and harvesting their sperm for ritual purposes.

The sperm-hunting crew were exposed when they got into a car accident and 30 used condoms were found in their car boot.

The group is facing a 17-count charge of aggravated incident assault even though a woman raping a man is not considered a criminal offence in Zimbabwe.

In their defence, the women denied allegations that they were sperm hunters, claiming instead that they were simply hard-working prostitutes.

Whatever the reason, the men of Zimbabwe are wary. One woman told the Agence France Presse that she had recently pulled over to assist male hitchhikers who refused to enter her car for fear of being raped.

Semen has become a lucrative commodity in Zimbabwe, University of Zimbabwe sociologist, Watch Ruparanganda said, adding that now businessmen furnish street youth with a hotel room, booze and prostitutes and asked to hand over the used condom after the fact.

The rituals could be for anything from enhancing good fortune, boosting business or protecting criminals from police detection.

The Zimbabwe National Traditional Healers Association slams the practice.

“We believe that this is a form of witchcraft. So we are totally against the idea,” said spokesman George Kandiyero.

“It has really frightened people,” he said. “It has really brought in a bit of shock because normally it was the other way round, normally we know of men raping women, not women raping men.”

“We do not have the exact number of confirmed cases,” said national police spokesman Wayne Bvudzijena of the phenomenon that was first publicised in 2009.

“These cases occurred mostly when the victims were hitchhiking and boarded private vehicles. We encourage people to use public transport.”

Donald Trump’s sons investigated over hunting trip in Zimbabwe

Sons of US tycoon Donald Trump are being investigated by Zimbabwean conservationists who said on Friday that they questioned the legality of the boys’ hunting spree in Zimbabwe.

Trump sons posing with dead game in Zimbabwe

The investigation was launched after photos were published online showing Donald Jr and Eric posing with dead game animals.

The independent Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force alleged that the Trump sons had killed an elephant, endangered leopard, a buffalo, a crocodile and other “big game” animals on a 2011 trip arranged by a South African Safari firm not registered in Zimbabwe.

A flurry of protests trailed the release of the hunting photos online – one pictured both men standing with the dead leopard and in another photograph one brother was seen holding up an elephant’s severed tail in one hand and a knife in the other.

According to reports, animal protection groups expressed their outrage at how “rich people” bragged about their “shocking and unethical” actions.

Head of the conservationists’ , Johnny Rodrigues, said investigators were probing records to ascertain if license and trophy fees were paid and if the South African firm that organised the hunting trip had been authorized by Zimbabwean wildlife authorities.

Organisers and hunters could face fines of up to $500,000 if found guilty of breaching hunting laws in Zimbabwe.

“The safari operator was obviously paid but the majority of the money probably didn’t come into Zimbabwe,” Rodriguez said.

The Trump brothers claimed they gave the meat from the dead animals to impoverished local villagers, but the claims are being checked as there are no villages in the northwestern Matetsi district of Zimbabwe where they hunted.

“It is an insult to say ‘we gave away the meat.’ They mustn’t turn around and say that they shot those animals for conservation either,” Rodrigues told The AP.

“This is the problem with those who they think they can come to manipulate and control people, destroy natural resources and say ‘we came to help.’ We don’t want them here,” he said.

The Trump brothers said they only hunted in areas with excesses. Zimbabwean authorities say they are investigating reports that hunting dogs were used in the 2011 hunting trips.

Veteran animal rights campaigner Meryl Harrison of the Veterinarians for Animal Welfare in Harare said Zimbabwe’s Wildlife Act of 2000 prohibits hunters from using dogs to hunt leopard or any wildlife unless given special authority in certain conditions.

“A leopard doesn’t stand a chance. The dogs chase it up a tree and they stay at the bottom of the tree and the hunter takes an easy shot,” she said.

Mugabe turns 88, vows to stay in power

Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe turned 88 on Tuesday, joking about reports circulating for years of his imminent demise and vowing to stay in power despite international condemnation of his economic and human rights record.

Mugabe said he was in tip-top shape in an interview with state radio, and made no reference to media reports that he is receiving treatment for prostate cancer in Singapore.

“I have died many times. That’s where I have beaten Christ. Christ died once and resurrected once,” the devout Catholic Mugabe told the radio broadcaster.

“I am as fit as a fiddle.”

Mugabe charmed world leaders with his wit and intellect in the early years of his rule, when a relatively rich Zimbabwe was praised for its education and social systems.

But he has since become a pariah in the West, blamed for running the economy into the ground and for massive human rights abuses to keep his grip on power.

Mugabe, one of Africa’s longest-serving leaders, said his party ZANU-PF would choose his successor at the right time, but he had no intention of stepping down for now.

“Our members of the party will certainly select someone once I say I am now retiring, but not yet,” he said in a separate interview with state TV.

“At this age I can still go some distance, can’t I,” Mugabe said, laughing, clapping his hands and rocking in his chair.

Asked whether his party still had anything more to offer after more than three decades in power, Mugabe said ZANU-PF’s signature policies remained the defence of political independence and the pursuit of black economic empowerment.

Critics say ZANU-PF has helped ruin one of Africa’s most promising economies with its seizures and distribution of white-owned commercial farms, and its more recent drive to force foreign-owned firms to transfer majority shareholdings to Zimbabweans.

Mugabe has shared power with his long-time foe, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, over the last three years after violent and disputed elections in 2008.

Mugabe has been nominated as ZANU-PF party’s candidate and intends to run in an election he wants held this year. That would be a year ahead of schedule under the power-sharing deal which also calls for a new constitution to be drawn up and approved ahead of the poll.

“It’s not a secret that there is grumbling in the party over his decision to go on and on, but those seeking to succeed him are not strong enough to challenge him,” said Eldred Masunungure, a political science professor at the University of Zimbabwe.

“They are stuck with him for better or worse, and the attitude in ZANU-PF appears to be – lets hope for the best,” Masunungure said.

A June 2008 U.S. diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks last year said Mugabe had prostate cancer that had spread to other organs. His doctor urged him to step down in 2008, according to the cable.

Mugabe, who has ruled the southern African state since its independence from Britain in 1980, chaired a cabinet meeting on Tuesday.

Presidential officials said he would celebrate his birthday at a family dinner at his home in Harare. ZANU-PF is planning a celebration rally in eastern Zimbabwe on Saturday.