(MUTARE, Zimbabwe) — A Zimbabwean Water Resources Minister stunned fellow legislators when he blamed mermaids for two incomplete water dam projects.
Samuel Sipepa Nkomo said the mythical sea creatures were to blame for the delay in dam projects in Gokwe and Manicaland at a Senate Committee meeting, the Daily Mail reports. Nkomo said mermaids were scaring the workers away from work sites and the only way to appease them was to brew “tradtional beer.”
In a country with both Christian and animistic beliefs, the myth of mermaids, or water spirits, is a common cultural belief. The Minister for Local Government, Rural and Urban Development, Ignatius Chombo, also believes in mermaids because he agreed with Nkomo at the meeting.
The reservoirs, when completed, will aid in water supply and irrigation projects for the landlocked nation.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Joe Sterling and Darran Simon, CNN
Eliza Mackintosh, CNN
Ray Sanchez, Zayn Nabbi, Euan McKirdy and Angela Dewan, CNN
Samantha Beech, CNN