A new superstitious belief has emerged in some areas in Mozambique – that bald men have gold in their head, reports BBC.
However, the head has to be taken to a witchdoctor who will use magical powers to extract the gold – and make them rich.
As a result, police say five bald men have been killed in central Mozambique – two in May in Milange district, close to the border with Malawi, and three this month in Morrumbala district.
Two young people have so far been arrested over the killings.
Mozambique police spokesman Inacio Dina said a team had been sent to the remote region to investigate the murders:
“Our preliminary conclusion indicates that the phenomenon is due to cultural beliefs. We are currently investigating the case to find out more and to understand the dimension of the problem.
“The phenomenon can lead bald people to be pursued and killed. This is a serious homicide crime. Our current interest is to catch and hold responsible all those involved.”
Police in Mozambique say witchdoctors appear to have switched tactics, targeting bald men rather than people with albinism.
“The belief is that the head of a bald man contains gold. The killers think they can enrich themselves out of it,” said Afonso Dias, a police commander in Mozambique’s central Zambezia province.