Fact checking: The viral Nandi County ‘speaking tree that pours out water’
Over the past few days, a video has made rounds on social media in Kenya alleging that a tree gushing with water and flooding it’s surrounding was found in Twatei Village in Nandi County.
In the claims shared by Dominic Yego and re-shared by others, they claimed that the tree made an utterance last Friday, meaning God was communicating with humans.
“A mysterious phenomenon of a tree in a community in Nandi, Twatei village, where water is gushing out and flooding the area. The tree spoke last Friday twice, uttering the following words, “My people are suffering, please listen to their cries. Indeed there are extraordinary happenings that are beyond our understanding and human explanation. God is communicating,” claimed Mr Yego.
Mr Yego went as far as claiming the unnatural occurrence and utterances were in relation to Azimio La Umoja and God telling them to stop their demonstrations. He hushed and lashed out at people who called him out for misleading people.
However, Mr Yego’s assertions and claims are all false. Nairobi News sought to fact-check his claims. First, there is no location named Twatei that can be found via Google Maps.
There is also no identification for Twatei Village either. In later comments, Mr Yego changed the tree’s location to Kapsisiywo in Kapsabet.
Secondly, the tree gushing out water from its trunk is not in Kenya but in Dinosa Village in Montenegro, a Southeastern European country.
Reports of this unexpected occurrence have been reported for years. The mulberry tree is located in a meadow and is known to turn into a water fountain when it rains heavily in the region. From a hollow in the tree trunk, the water then gushes out like water from a pipe.
According to Amusing Planet, the rains had pounded the area and flooded underground springs in the meadow. The additional pressure created pushes up water through the tree trunk and the water finds its way out via hollows and cracks. It is believed this has been a re-occurring phenomenon for over 20 to 25 years.
Superstitions in Kenya are not new especially in rural Kenya. For many, instances such as bees swarming properties or a person is a sign of the items either being stolen properties or the person being a thief.
This opposes the thought that the bees are simply looking for new locations to nest and hive.
Snakes found in homes are believed to be sent by witchcraft practitioners to their targets as opposed to the idea the snake was probably migrating.
The same hype was also witnessed in February 2023, when Mary, the mother of Jesus, allegedly appeared at the St. Clare Parish in Kasarani, Nairobi County, during a mass. The congregants became hysterical with song and prayer, but later the church leadership claimed it had simply been a refraction and reflection of light that made her image appear on the wall.
The first thought for many unenlightened people is that such occurrences are considered supernatural as opposed to science and geography simply determining the unfolding of events- such as the tree gushing out water in Montenegro and the reflection of Mary’s image on the church wall.