Social Affairs

  • Malawi cracks down on 'vampire' lynch mobs

    Police in the south-east African state of Malawi say they have arrested 140 members of lynch mobs who attacked people suspected of being vampires. At least eight people are believed to have been killed, including two men on Thursday in the second city, Blantyre. One was set on fire and the other stoned, according to police.

    Two others were arrested for threatening to suck people's blood but police say they have no medical reports of any actual bloodsucking.
    Vigilante killings started on 16 September when three people suspected of being bloodsuckers were killed by a mob.

    Traditional leaders in southern Malawi believe the vampire rumors started across the border in Mozambique where rumors of blood sucking have led to violence this week.

    In Mozambique, protesters have targeted police because they believe they are protecting the supposed vampires, leading a northern town's administrator to flee the city. The villagers in these areas believe human blood sucking is a ritual practiced by some to become rich. They also believe they are failing to catch the blood suckers because they use magical powers.

    More on BBC

    Read more
  • Virginia couple wins North American Wife Carrying Championship



    A Virginia couple took home the grand prize--$630 and 12 cases of beer--after competing in the North American Wife Carrying Championship in Maine Saturday.

    According to a report, Jake and Kirsten Barney finished second in the race last year, trudging through water and jumping over logs, all the while Jake carrying Kirsten on his back.

    The competition, which is based on the Finnish legend of "Ronhainen the Robber," features 60 couples who take home the wife's weight in beer, and five times her weight in cash.

    Read more

    Read more
  • Shocking: Woman in China turns blind in one eye after hours of mobile gameplay

    A 21-year-old woman from Dongguang, China lost her vision after playing the much popular "Kings of Glory" game on her smartphone for an entire day. The woman who goes by her pseudonym, Xiao Wu, felt a weird sensation on her right eye on the night of October 1. She had to be admitted to the hospital on the very next day.

    Ophthalmologists in the Donggiang Huaxia Eye Hospital confirmed that Wu is suffering from retinal artery occlusion, a condition where the blood flow through the retinal artery is blocked. This irreversible condition will result in the painless loss of monocular vision and is usually found in patients of 70-years of age and older. Retinal artery occlusion is a very serious condition which results in permanent vision loss.

    Wu: Obsessed with "Kings of Glory"

    Asia One reports that Wu is a person who is addicted to "Kings of Glory". Friends of Wu claims that the young woman used to spend more than 8 hours a day just for gameplay, and on some days, she even used to skip sleep to complete various levels of the game.

    The warning was first signalled when Wu started playing the game after dinner on October 1. After a painful night, Wu was rushed to the hospital on the next morning, where doctors confirmed the seriousness of her condition. According to medical experts, Wu's condition is the result of excessive fatigue in her eyes due to continuous exposure to the mobile phone screen.

    Read more

    Read more
  • Diarrhea outbreak infects 127 in Dire Dawa Last Month

    About 127 people were in September infected by acute diarrhea in Ethiopia’s second largest city Dire Dawa, 446 kms east of Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa.

    This is according to an Ethiopian official said on Monday.

    Muluken Argaw, Dire Dawa city Health Bureau Chief, said the infected people were being treated in the city’s main hospital, while several were discharged after they completed treatment. Argaw cited lack of proper waste disposal means, poor sanitation condition, and failure to properly cook vegetable foods as reasons behind the diarrhea outbreak.

    Several major cities in Ethiopia including Addis Ababa, Mekelle and Bahir Dar have recorded the outbreaks that infected thousands earlier this year.

    The outbreaks is said to be caused majorly by unsanitary health practices and Ethiopia’s rainy season which stretches from late June until mid-September.

    The Ethiopia Federal Ministry of Health, regional and cities health bureaus have also been combating the diarrhea outbreak by treating unhygienic conditions in factories and agricultural areas.

    The ministry is also presently engaged in educational programmes on the cause of the disease and ways to prevent and treat it. (Xinhua/NAN) 

    Read more
  • California man wins $1M after wife scolds him for buying too many lottery tickets

    A California man won $1 million from a scratch-off ticket after his wife scolded him for buying too many lottery tickets.

    Hermenegildo Beltran-Meza was so wary of his wife finding out about his lotto purchases that he hid in the bathroom to scratch them off, according to a California Lottery press release.

    Beltran-Meza bought two California Black Premium Scratchers for $10 each. The first turned out to be a loser, but the second was the $1 million winner. That's when Beltran-Meza summoned the courage to tell his wife about his deeds.

    "You said I'm never going to win and there I won, there's proof," Beltran-Meza told his wife, delivering the good news.

    The couple said they will use some of the money to put toward their retirement.

    Read more

    Read more
  • Irrecha 2010 E.C Celebrated Colorfully

    The Irrecha festival of the Oromo people celebrated colorfully at the resort town of Bishoftu, 42km south-east of Addis Ababa.

    Wearing traditional clothes, devotees who have been arriving at the town since Saturday, gathered at Lake Hora Arsedi, where the celebration takes place, since 5 am in the morning.

    Led by the Aba Gedaas, leaders of the traditional social stratification system of the Oromo, the devotees expressed gratitude for Waqqa (God) at the lake side.

    The Aba Gedaas carried out the rituals in offering prayers in thanksgiving for the past and wishing the best for the future as well as blessing the crowd gathered for the festival.

    The Oromo practices Irrecha as a thanksgiving celebration twice a year (in autumn and spring) to praise Waaqa (God) for peace, health, fertility and abundance they have gained.

    The autumn ritual takes place every year in Bishoftu at Lake Horsede to celebrate the end of the rainy season either at the end of September or beginning of October.

    The other festival takes in May at the top of mountains to mark the end of the dry season and the onset of rainy season. ENA

    Read more