Monday, Dec 11 2017 | Time 22:45 Hrs(IST)
  • Trader from Palghar wounded in gun fire, robbed off Rs 6 lakh
  • Administration ready for Kinwat Municipal Council polls on Dec 13
  • Mah Legislative Council adjourned, Opposition terms loan waiver as 'gimmick'
  • City’s heart and lung transplant scenario to accelerate
  • Poland's Morawiecki sworn in as new prime minister
  • No question of merging MGP with BJP: Sudin Dhavalikar
  • Bollywood congratulates Anushka and Virat on wedding
  • SP to boycott oath-taking ceremony of mayor, councillors of Ayodhya Municipal Corporation
  • Hoodlums torched government vehicle and vandalised Nawada
  • NHM employees' strike enters Day 8
  • ASI among 12 injured in attack by sand mafias
  • ----
  • ----
  • J&K DY CM inaugurates 63rd National School Games
  • Jammu IGP reviews security ahead of Republic Day
World Share

Benin cult priests charged over anti-voodoo prayer deaths

COTONOU, Feb 17 (Reuters) Four Christian priests from a Benin anti-voodoo cult were arrested and charged today for their suspected role in five deaths during prayers held last month in anticipation of the end of the world.
The followers of the "Very Holy Church of Jesus Christ of Baname" died after they were instructed to seal off their prayer rooms, burn incense and charcoal and wait for the world to end, residents and a survivor told Reuters. Others were treated in hospital for severe breathing problems.
The four priests were charged with manslaughter in the capital Porto Novo and were sent to prison pending trial.
The group's young woman leader, Vicentia Chanvoukini, known as "Lady Perfect" and considered a god by her followers, was not charged.
"Those who died are not really members of the church, they are people who came to test us," she told local radio.
The cult, which denounces Benin's local voodoo culture, has thousands of followers in the small West African country. There have been several violent clashes between the Baname followers, who often wear red scarves to identify themselves, and members of other faiths since 2009.
About 40 percent of Beninois follow voodoo, which includes worship of royal pythons at the country's pink Temple of the Python. Voodoo also enjoys its own national holiday.
Voodoo traditions endure despite efforts by Christian missionaries to stamp them out in centuries past. Today, many Christians and Muslims in Benin incorporate traditional African beliefs into their faith.