Wizards make millions as anxious politicians seek election guarantees

A few weeks ago, Vice President William Ruto commented on politicians and witchcraft, sparking a big debate among Kenyans.

While launching a Duruma Bible in Kinango, Kwale, the DP faintly noticed that some coastal rulers had marks on their bodies that smelled like a wizard’s scalpel.

Additionally, Ruto said he had interacted with Coast politicians who had traveled to Tanzania to obtain “secret powers” from wizards.

“Most politicians’ bodies have been rubbed with ashes or concoctions of various things. Most of them went to Tanzania and Unguja to get help from witchdoctors,” Ruto said.

Fake news? Not enough! The Nairobian established that kupiga ramli is deeply rooted in the political class, with revelations from some wizards in town that it’s time to eat between now and after the August election.

They say some politicians have started soliciting their services to help beat rivals ahead of party nominations in preparation for the Aug. 9 election.

In an interview with The Nairobian, Sabil Abdul, a Tanzanian-born Mganga who operates in Nairobi and Mombasa, said hundreds of politicians had booked him for treatment.

Sabil Abdul.

“I arrived from Tanzania on March 28. This campaign period is always busy for us. In my case, I have received many calls from Kenyan politicians who want my services,” he said.

Abdul says he charges between 50,000 and 1 million shillings depending on the seat a politician is considering and administers his medication in the wee hours of the night.

“Some of those who have called me are those vying for parliamentary seats or gubernatorial seats. But the majority are those seeking to become MPs,” he said.

He says that once the client pays the “processing fee”, he uses the money to buy things for the rituals, adding that some herbs are “imported” from Tanzania.

“The treatment is my secret, but I give them herbs to put in their bath water so that luck follows them until election day.

“Before treatment begins, I explain everything to them because faith and belief in the supernatural is important. Those who lose elections understand the rules,” Abdul said.

Two years ago, Abdul married a Kenyan virgin from the coast, expanding his base of operations.

Mama Kipini, a witch based in Pangani, told The Nairobian that just like other election years, her bin is full.

“They (the politicians) reached out to me and some visited my house. Unlike other waganga, I don’t force them to undergo strange rituals. I only provide them with charms that will give them a following,” Kipini said.

Some of the juju paraphernalia she hands out to politicians are rings, chains and oils which she sells for between 5,000 and 50,000 shillings depending on the political seat targeted.

Unsurprisingly, men of God find this practice abhorrent. Bishop Samuel Njririri of Stewards Revival Pentecostal Church explains that the Bible is clear on the fate of those who meddle with dark forces.

Stewards Revival Pentecostal Church Bishop Samuel Njiriri.

“How can a sorcerer help you when he cannot heal himself? Leaders who come to church gain divine favor because God is omnipresent,” he said.

Bishop Njiriri added that even kings who worshiped idols and extraordinary powers were rejected by God.

“Satan is not free, in fact, in some cases people are forced to undergo shocking sacrifices, but the favor of God is free. That is why, for example, I do not support those who buy anointing oil.

“There is no difference between those who buy ‘anointing oils’ and those who seek to be treated by Waganga,” the Bishop mocked.

Counseling psychologist James Mbugua explains that witchcraft and similar services are about metaphysical forces, saying things that exist in the spiritual world are about faith and beliefs.

He says if those looking for the services believe it works, they will go ahead as it is quite difficult for many to understand.

“Their reasoning is, if it works, why not go to the wizard for ‘cure’ at a reasonable cost and wait to be elected without spending millions of shillings campaigning?” said Mbugua

He says it also depends on where and how one was raised, as they may have grown up believing in these powers and in their view of the world they believe these powers work.

“Wizards are also good at playing with people’s minds. They promote their services during this period. In fact, others claiming to be from Tanzania might be locals using different names to lure ignorant people,” he said.

In 2007, a former MP was forced to fight allegations that he used snakes to scare rivals and voters.

Another MP has been accused in court of claiming he acquired certain powers from wizards to win an election.

And who can forget the incident where juju material was recovered from the car of a newly elected MP who drowned trying to cross a flooded river during flash floods?

I refused to let my scars define me

It’s about accepting our scars and disfigurements, all our differences make us human and unique; this is how the world is supposed to be.

Comments are closed.