Home Travel and Tourism General ‘I took Loliondo’s $0.3 miracle cup’

‘I took Loliondo’s $0.3 miracle cup’

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DAR ES SALAAM, TANZANIA - In the course of the last four months Tanzanians, and neighboring Kenyans, have been bombarded by newspaper and television with news of the 'miracle cup' being administered by a retired pastor of the Lutheran Church of Tanzania, Ambilikile Mwasapile (76).
Thousands of people from all parts of the country endured long queues, while political and government leaders flew in by helicopters or light aircraft to Samunge village, Loliondo district in Arusha in northern Tanzania.
 Looking at pictures and hearing the testimonies of people who have taken the cup, the first thing that came to my mind was: 'Tanzania must be a sick country'. If government leaders and rich businessmen who can afford expensive foreign medical treatment turn to herbal solutions from a remote village , then there must be a secret here.
Having suffered from several health ailments myself for the last four years with no proper cure in sight, my family encouraged me to take the trip to take the 'miracle cup'.
Out of sheer luck I was given a free ride in a private car of a pharmaceuticals salesman to Arusha on Sunday March 27th, 2011 even after hearing that the Government had slapped a temporarily travel ban to Loliondo for one week to April 1st.
 I counted on providence to surmount impediments ahead of my trip. A colleague of the salesman traveling to northern Tanzania to sell drugs wasn't amused by people seeking herbal solutions to their diseases. "If it (cup) works who will buy our drugs?" he asked.
There was no way to proceed to Loliondo on the following day because of the travel ban, no vehicle dared risk to take passengers for the grueling 400-plus km from Arusha to the remote village, but hundreds of Tanzania and Kenya registered vehicles that were in Loliondo already when the ban was slapped on, continued to return with their passengers who poured out their experiences.
I booked a seat in one of several Four Wheel Drive vehicles to travel at midnight on March 31st so that April 1st would find me as close to my destination as possible. The ride was an old model Toyota Prado which is designed to take seven passengers, but it packed in nine of us -- seven of whom were heavy weights. We were packed like sardines.
Passengers paid different fares depending on the tout who found you a seat in one of the vehicles preparing to travel to the wilderness. I paid Tshs 120,000 (US$80) while others paid up to Tshs 150,000 ($100) for a round trip. Some operators charge as low as Tshs 70,000 ($46).
The initial part of the trip was smooth because the road to the Mto wa Mbu (river of mosquitoes) junction is tarmac. The tarmac road continues on to the world renowned Lake Manyara Conservation Area, the Ngorongoro crater and the Serengeti national park. From this junction to Samunge is a whole new ball game because the road is very rough. The road is all rocky and intersected by numerous gullies created by rains that are falling during this season.
In order to circumvent the Police road block at Mto wa Mbu and also to avoid the queue, our driver, Omar, at 3 AM sought and hired a local motor bike rider (bodaboda) to show the village paths out. It took one hour to drive through village paths, but got stuck in mud a few times forcing patients to push the vehicle in order to proceed.
By 4am we were back on the road to Loliondo, but had to make an emergency stop because one passenger from Dar es Salaam had a very serious asthmatic seizure. He nearly died on us. A lady relative gave him an injection of medicine he had carried with him. It took at least 45 minutes before he calmed down and re-started our trip.
An one hour later, the man had another serious seizure, the women in the vehicle started crying loudly, but one Ms Betty, a nurse by profession from Tanga, who we discovered later was also traveling to Samunge for a cure of Asthma, took out her own stock of medicines and syringe, injected him and the man calmed down. God knows what would have happened if the second doze hadn't been available. The third seizure was less serious, we stopped for just about 20 minutes.
A mother with a five-year old daughter, who vomited incessantly anything from water to any food along the way, was concerned what wouldl happen if her daughter  vomitted the medicine from the preacher man's cup.
At the Mto wa Mbu road block there were over 50 vehicles of all sizes with patients waiting to proceed at day break, we had beaten the queue.
Upon our success to circumvent the road block, we started on the grueling rough road  many of its portions have been washed away by the seasonal rains leaving bare large boulders, the driver was forced to stop several times to negotiate a dip or rock on the road.
However, in the Loliondo area, on the eastern periphery of the Serengeti wildlife national park, we were given a taste of the fun of tourism by watching wild animals gracefully grazing in the plains. On each side of the road we came upon groups of zebras, impalas, wildebeests, ostriches and several others.
The animals live side by side with the Maasai herdsmen - the only people allowed to live their traditional life there.
By 11.00 am the driver said: "We are 30km away from Samunge. This is where queues started the last time I was here a few days ago."  The road section is still littered with empty plastic water bottles, soft drinks canes and plastic bags, among others. One also sees the evidence that people must have stayed long because of the improvised cooking stone tripods along the way.
The situation got worse as we drew closer to Samunge village. Driver Omar was amazed to find that we didn't encounter the anticipated long vehicle queue. We all agreed that his decision to circumvent the road block paid off handsomely.
"There is Samunge village," the driver shouted as we inclined to the bottom of a hill with a seasonal river flowing in it. The driver hesitated a bit, but took up courage after seeing a Suzuki car take the plunge and crossed successfully; he followed becoming the 7th vehicle on the line at 12.00 noon.
Omar who was bracing for a three-day return trip to the village was relieved saying, "We start back to Arusha as soon as you take your cup." By 1.00pm we were looking at Babu, dressed in a red T-shirt next to his baked brick house dutifully dipping his plastic cup in a huge metal pot and pouring the light brown liquid in cups that are given away by a selected group of persons to patients in vehicles.
A lady carrying a tray of cups approached our vehicle and asked: "How many are you?" She was told 'nine' she asked for payment of Tshs 500 (US$0.33) from each and if we had come with a foreigner, he/she would pay only one (1) US dollar.
The assistants don't accept anything more than that. They provide medicines in two sizes - one for adults and half that size for children.The Tshs 500 charge may seem small, still Rev Mwasapile gets only Tshs 100, Tshs 200 is Church alms, and the other Tshs 200 goes to pay the helpers at the village.
Soon after taking the 'miracle cup' more vehicles crossed the seasonal river and the queue began to build, but we were confident they would also start their return journey just as soon.
We rested for one more hour. We saw the sheer truth of 'demand and supply concept' - the half liter of bottled Kilimanjaro water that was going for Tshs 2,500 (US$2.0) dropped to Tshs 1000 ($0.66); a plate of rice and meat that sold anything to Tshs 10,000 ($6.66) was selling at Tshs 3,000 ($2). For them business was low and some food vendors were bundling their stuff ready to leave.
We started back at 2.00pm. All excited we had taken the miracle cup. Nobody among us revealed what ailed him that forced them to travel all the way to the remote outpost. Any way that is a doctor-patient privilege, isn't it!
However, it wasn't long before I noticed that the asthmatic man, started to breath normally and as we proceeded on the trip till midnight on April 1, 2011, we made no emergency stops for him.
 It could be the outcome of the 'cup'. My family was anxious to get tales from Loliondo, which I have obliged. Neighbours and relatives are still calling to check on my progress, but I tell them I follow the instructions of Rev Mwasapile to take a medical exam within 21 days of drinking the miracle cup.
 That period hasn't elapsed yet.
Comments (2)Add Comment
written by Richard mokua, April 11, 2011
It's miraculous l got the mesh about Babu and took step ,within three days l took the cup.Ian waiting for 21days to elapse ,I will tell more after that!
written by africanmalaika, April 11, 2011
praise the lord for his servant Rev Mwasapile

waiting to hear the good news have faith

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