Kalenjin turn to traditional rituals to help stop coronavirus spread

Monday, April 27th, 2020 18:36 |
Kalenjin elder Leonard Kirwa Bitok leads 73 leads and a group of youth in a ritual at the Seruiyot River along the Eldoret-Ravine highway. Photo/PD/JIMMY GITAKA

As coronavirus cases continue to rise across the globe, Kalenjin elders have now turned to traditional rituals and  prayers seeking God’s intervention to stop the pandemic.

Elders have been performing the rituals and traditional prayers for the past three weeks at various places as was  done hundreds of years ago whenever a dangerous or infectious diseases broke out. 

On Saturday Kipsigis elders converged at a stream near Daraja Mbili area at Kapkatet village in Bureti  to perform prayers. 

The brief ceremony was led by elders  Samuel Rono, David Soi and David Cheruiyot. It attracted 15 elders and religious leaders from the constituency. 

Sheep slaughtered

During the ritual, a white sleep is slaughtered, the meat roasted and part of it eaten while some meat is thrown into the stream or a river.

“The parts are thrown into the stream or river to be carried away by water. This signifies that any infectious disease and in this case Covid-19, is gone with water to an unknown place and disappear,” said Rono.

A similar ritual was performed at Mobet village in the constituency.

Meanwhile, Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony has unveiled mass testing for Covid-19 at Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI)/ Walter Reed laboratory in Kericho town. 

Following collaboration with KEMRI,  Chepkwony said the county could now test up to 2,000 samples per day.

He also revealed that additional equipment will be activated so as to test up to 6,000 samples per day in the coming days.

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