Nairobi News


Elders perform ritual to ‘keep Covid-19 at bay’ – VIDEO

By Alex Njeru April 29th, 2020 1 min read

Tharaka traditional herbalists have performed a ritual that they say will “protect” their community against the invasion of Covid-19 pandemic that continues to wreak havoc globally.

The past childbearing age elders who are the custodians of the traditions of Tharaka community held the ceremony at a shrine in Kibingo village in Tharaka South Sub-County.

They later visited all the entry points to the community and planted twigs to “block” the disease from entering their territory.

During the ceremony led Nderi Kiobe, the elders sang traditional songs and prayed facing Mount Kenya Forest while holding some herbs that are traditionally believed to have powers to heal diseases and even protect the community from calamity.

Tharaka traditional herbalists perform a ritual locally known as Muriira at a shrine in Kibingo village on April 29, 2020 to ‘protect’ their community against invasion of Covid-19 pandemic. PHOTO | ALEX NJERU

To bless the ritual, the old men and women also drank raw gruel made from millet and finger millet prepared by a 90-year-old woman.


Speaking to the media after the exercise, Mr Kiobe said they believe that with the ritual, the disease that has no cure and that has already claimed lives of 218, 371 globally and 14 in Kenya will come to an end.

He said traditionally, Muriira ceremony was performed by Tharaka people to protect themselves from a pandemic such as locusts invasion and diseases including smallpox and leprosy.

“The ritual ceremony is meant to protect our people and Kenya at large against Covid-19 that is a global pandemic,” he said.