Loliondo no longer the promised land

By Babu Tendu | Monday, Sep 9th 2019 at 15:54
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Desperation, appeal, and desire to satisfy the spirit of adventure could be used to describe the source of motivation for many to set foot in the once busy village of Loliondo.

Based on the Kenya-Tanzania border at Samunge Village in rural Northern Tanzania, Ambilikile Masapila alias ‘Babu’, rose to fame in late 2010 when he claimed to have in his possession a cure.

Carissa edulis, Mugariga as would be referred by a taxonomist and the Swahili respectively is the plant at the heart of Masapila`s fame, was said to cure all forms of chronic illnesses, including, Cancer, Diabetes and HIV/AIDS.


The retired Lutheran pastor made quite a fortune in the course of his healing campaign seeing the trickling in of hopefuls seeking his intervention on their health.

Loliondo area was said to attract thousands of daily visitors who had a positive impact on the economy of the village of Samunge.

'Babu' also had his fair share of financial growth seeing to it that he was the main attraction to the area.

It is said that he would charge handsomely in order for him to surrender his concoction to his customers.

At the height of his fame, the herbal doctor is said to have been making a minimum of Sh225,851 for every working day.

The community also seemed to have benefited from the then attraction to the area since the high numbers of people that were trickling in brought in telecommunication companies.


Thousands trooped into the tiny village in Loliondo, others died on the way to at least try the special medicine by Babu approximately eight years ago.

His cure was however common across Africa and was mostly used along East Africa by the Maasai and the Sonjo people who inhabit the west of Lake Natron in Arusha Region, Tanzania, to treat ailments as diverse as Diarrhea, Veneral Diseases and Malaria.

The cure, however, was, according to Babu, dependent on faith and without having it sufficiently it would not work.

The herbal doctor, however, claimed that the cure was dismissed by propaganda and smear campaigns by medical doctors, Non-Governmental organizations and witch-hunt from the pulpits of Pentecostal churches to instill fear in would-be “pilgrims”.

He also insisted that miracles only happened to those who would believe.

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