German Doctor “Teaching” Kenyans Importance of Traditional Kenyan Herbs

Karyn Freudenberg
Dr. Karyn Freudenberg
Why does this sound like one of those stories about, “Who was the first person to discover Lake Victoria”?

Before I criticise, let me give a bit of background. Dr. Karyn Freudenberg, a German doctor living at the Kenyan coast has discovered the importance of herbs, plants and fruits found in the area. NTV Kenya discovered the doctor and decided to feature her.

According to NTV, the doctor not only discovered Moringa and aloe vera, but also the use of pawpaw seeds in deworming dogs and curing intestinal issues in human beings.

However, why this story made it to the media or why it should be celebrated remains a puzzle. Don’t get me wrong, what she is doing is good, but have we featured all those Kenyans that have been teaching and coaching people on importance of Moringa and Aloe Vera? Aren’t we the same people that sneer at hawkers in matatus and buses when they sell herbs? Aren’t we the same people that call such people, “waganga” and “wachawi”?

Or is using herbal medicine wizardy and juju, when it’s Kenyans but world class innovation when a European does it?

Anyhu, I hope Kenyans will start valuing the organic fruits, vegetables, trees and herbs we have, before we find them all imported and patented in Europe.

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