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LOLIONDO CHRONICLES

A witch doctor serving his clients
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Taken aback, I straightened up my “Brazilian” hair and removed my fake eyelashes. I could simply not decipher what is wrong with our Kenyans, especially the elite. How could he be so gullible to an extent of trading his five senses coupled with extreme intelligence for the infamous concoction termed as “Kikombe cha Babu?” He must have been probably bundled up in a rummaged old bus or Nissan like one would a sack of Sukuma wiki while headed for the little Samunge village in Tanzania, determined to quench his thirst. “No” I got my words at last “there is no way a whole Professor could lower himself to the level of a layman or religious fanatic”. The Citizen Television special news feature ‘Ghosts of Loliondo’ had simply brought to the limelight the hyper-desperation that most Kenyans are silently suffering from.
The self-declared prophet Elijah going by the name Ambilikiwe Mwasapile or Babu, who hails from Samunge village, must have enjoyed the bank-rolling as long as it lasted. It was almost close to a pat on the shoulder by God or the gods themselves as John Steinbeck puts it in his novella “The Pearl”. What pisses me off, even more, is his blatant arrogance and bloated ego. He still has the guts to declare on live television that his miracle concoction “Kikombe cha Babu” actually works. How can he shift blame to the very clients who put their lives on the line, braved the two or three-day journey to the ill-fated village to try out his ‘scientific experiment’ that cost their lives and health? He says that he has no regrets whatsoever and those who did not simply recuperate disregarded his stern warning which instructed them not to backslide to immorality.
According to Citizen Television, tens of the HIV/AIDS patients who traded their ARVs daily dose for the miracle cup lost the battle in the long-run. The few who lived to tell the story like Peter Ojunga, a professor at Rongo University are still mesmerized at their extreme folly as they try to pick up the pieces of their lives.
What is worth noting however is that Babu is not the only one in the game! In the past, we have witnessed far worse shocking and depressing accounts of Pastor Kanyari, Mugo-the fake doctor and the most recent case of religious fanaticism that put the miracle healer Dr Owuor on the spot. So are Kenyans ignorant or do they simply enjoy being part of the drama?
Therefore, here are a few take-away lessons from Loliondo :
1. Witchdoctors have existed since time immemorial and none has ever received a vision about a cure for HIV/AIDS. The last in the line so far was Prophet Jeremiah.
2. Desperation is real but no matter how deep it runs into your veins, cool your heels.
3. Trust no one apart from God. A witch doctor is a self-declared mediocre healer. Just like Dr. Mugo, they are out to fleece your pockets.
4. Babu is just a normal human being. Driven by inherent greed, he cannot hesitate to seize the opportunity if it presents itself.
5. HIV/AIDS is a life-time illness. You cannot just wish it away. However, worth noting is the fact that it is not a life sentence.

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