Uhm, no, elephant dung does not cure Covid-19: Namibian government warns against fake news

Namibian authorities have warned against fake reports touting elephant dung as a cure for Covid-19.
Image: 123RF/Byrdyak

Namibian authorities have warned against the use of elephant dung as a cure for Covid-19 after it was touted on social media.

Spokesperson for the department of environment, forestry and tourism in Namibia, Romeo Muyunda, told The Namibian newspaper that the government was aware of the increased demand for elephant dung which is now being sold on social media.

“We have seen on social media people selling elephant dung for exorbitant prices. There is a whole hype around it. Before, it wasn’t even sold. It was used domestically by people for certain illnesses as one of those traditional medicines. If it was sold, it was rare,” he said.

Some Namibian traditional healers told Reuters that they use elephant dung to treat headaches, toothaches and blocked sinuses. They said claims that it could also cure Covid-19 were a new trend.

Spokesperson for the health department in the country, Kalumbi Shangula told The Namibian that there was no known cure for Covid-19. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has also warned against false reports about a “cure”, saying it is “co-ordinating efforts to develop and evaluate medicines to treat Covid-19”.

“So far there is no cure for Covid-19. If anybody claims as such, it must be treated as a false claim,” Shangula said.

As of Wednesday, Namibia occupied the 109th spot globally on Worldometer, a website which provides real-time statistics and data on different topics, including the coronavirus pandemic.

The country has 4,464 confirmed cases, 37 deaths and 2,407 recoveries.

BY CEBELIHLE BHENGU

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