The Witches of Tindang Print

 

 


 

Witches of Tindag

" The Witches of Tindang."

 

old lady

 

"  A woman from Tindang."

 

 

Prior to my visit to Ghana I set my itinerary and all I knew about Tindang was that I had an opportunity to visit a witches village. My imagination about a village of witches was fueled by images of Hollywood lore. I was excited to meet " witches", thinking I might find some inspirational images to paint. What I discovered left me emotionally taxed. This is the story of the Witches of Tindang.

 

 

 

Tindang is found near Ngani in the Yendi District of North East Ghana, locally the name is referred to as the Ngani-Tindang Witch Camp. It is here where I visited the witches. At first the village appeared like most other rural villages scattered across Northern Ghana but once I had a chance to learn about the witches I was overwhelmed with emotions.

Tindang hut

" A Typical home for a few woman from Tindang."

 

The Ngani-Tindang witch camp has a resident adult population of about 374 with women constituting 81% (221) and 19% (53) men of the population. Unlike other camps in the region Ngani-Tindang camp has both males and females in the camp. It is worth noting that some men alleged to have been wizards also suffer discrimination to the extent of being rejected by their families.

The Ngani-Tindang home is typical of such vulnerable men and women with majority of the population being above 70 years. It is estimated that there are 463 children staying in the camp with their fathers, grandmothers and mothers accused of witchcraft. The climate is hot and dry for most of the year. The people of the witch camp must walk 1.5km to the river Oti for water.

 

Growing up in Western Canada I only really thought of witches around Halloween or in the movies, the woman of Tindang are nothing like this. In most cases an elderly woman has been accused of witchcraft, many of the time, by family members. Once they are found guilty of the accusation they must leave their homes and all their belongings behind. Ngani-Tindang now becomes home and the woman somehow scrape by an existence in very harsh conditions. As I visited with the woman and a man from Ngani-Tindang it became very clear that the most important and pressing issue was the lack of water. The woman have to walk 1.5km in one direction for water that they collect from the river Oti.


off for water

" Some of the woman going to collect water and firewood."

 

The people of  Ngani-Tindang has never left my thoughts. I have tried to help the people with the drilling of a bore hole for safe portable water. The bore hole was dry so we tried again a second time, again the hole did not yeild enough water to work. So now the only option left is to pump water from the Oti River through a water purifacation system and into reservoirs. I will continue to try and help with this situation. I hope that others will as well.

 

boreholee

 

" Drilling of the first bore hole. No success."

 

"National Geographic report"

 

Proceeds from the giclee { The Witches of Tindang. } will help support in my efforts to complete this project.

 

Please feel free to contact me with any questions you might have.

Norman Nemeth.