Police hunt graves cult leader

South African Press Association, July 1, 2003

Police have launched a search for cult leader Nokulunga Fiphaza, who is accused of concealing deaths after eight people were discovered buried in a church compound at the Mandela Park informal settlement last week.

Police spokesperson Superintendent Nondumiso Jafta yesterday said police were still following leads and an arrest was expected soon.

She could not divulge details but said the suspect was still in the province.

Fifteen worshippers were granted bail by the local magistrates court and are to appear again on September 15.

The cult has been chased away from King William’s Town, East London, Port Elizabeth, Grahamstown, Matatiele, Tsolo, Payne Farm and lately Umtata.

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The cult is said to follow a strict regimen of four daily prayer sessions and marathon fasts that last up to 30 days.

Its members are not allowed to go to work or own identity books or valuables.

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