Malaria has caused more deaths than any other disease in Sub Saharan Africa and the battle against malaria is now a global concern. However, as we are putting a tough fight against malaria, many African countries including Uganda are realizing that the benefits of continuous use of traditional herbal medicine to treat and prevent malaria as used by our fore fathers and mothers to combat malaria.
My grandmother, called Millie Nalunkuse, was a herbalist and a very hard working lady. This quality has been passed on to the Kasumba family all over the world.
My father, Mr. Eriabu Kasumba, never used modern medicines to treat malaria when they were younger due to the cost implications. There was also greater availability to herbal remedies used to treat malaria. One of the herbs which they used to treat malaria is called Biter leaf (Vernonia amygalina) or “Omululuza “in Lugandan. The herb is very bitter, as the name suggests, and taking the extracted herb in a tea spoon of it is another battle by itself.
However, I am from Ngeye clan, a Ganda tribe from Buganda which is one of the oldest kingdoms in Africa but preferred to be called Kabakaship than kingdom. According to history, it thought that Buganda was one of the advanced kingdoms in Africa because of its organization and settings, and it is my Ngeye clan the gentleman called Mr. Bazirwendo who discovered the herbal medicine which cured the Kabaka of Buganda malaria fever centuries ago.
Kabaka Cured of Malaria
This Bakazirwendo who offered his daughter to Kabaka Kintu is the grandfather of this clan. The head of this clan is Kasujja (malaria fever fighter) of Busujja (from land of malaria fever). This ngeye clan is among the ones Kintu found already established in Buganda.
Although this clan descends from Bakazirwendo, its head is not addressed by that title. When Prince Kalemeera was banished in Bunyoro, he went with Lule Kyesimba (his maternal uncle), son of Bakazirwendo who was an expert in treating fever. He had treated kings and chiefs earlier and the reason he went with him perhaps was because of his expertise to cure disease.
After the death of Kalemeera, he became Prince Kimera’s medicineman and was among the many people who came escorting him to be crowned king in Buganda from Bunyoro. Because of his wide knowledge in medicine and ability to cure fever, Kimera gave him the name Kasujja (fever) and a village Busujja because he treated the disease well.
Kyesimba became a favourite of Kabaka Kimera because of their long history and when the father Bakazirwendo noticed this friendship, he honored it by handing over the clan to his son.
WHO Recognizes Herbal Medicine
However, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), ”traditional medicine is the sum total of all knowledge and practices, whether explicable or not, used in diagnosis, prevention and elimination of physical, mental or social imbalance and relying exclusively on practical experience and observations handed down from generation to generation, whether verbally or in writing. It encompasses all kinds of folk medicine, unconventional medicine and indeed any kind of therapeutic method that had been handed down by the tradition of a community or ethnic group. So, it is a cultural genre of medicine, which is common in various communities of the world.”
On September 21st 2018, Roperfree in collaboration with Fight Malaria were honored to be invited to the Traditional Herbal Medicine Training Conference which was organized by Ministry of Health under (NDA) National Drug Authority in recognition to their contributions towards fighting malaria in Uganda.
We invite you to join us online. Roperfree Brand Products can also be purchase from the following outlets in and around Kampala.
- Mega Super Market old taxi park & Garden city branch
- Friecca Pharmacy- Wandegeya,
- Jumbo Arcade shop 7 C in Kikubo
- People’s Plaza shop L4171 opposite Arua Park
- Asian African commodities- Italian Supermarket Muyenga – Kabalagala
- JohnRich Supermarket- Kabalagala
- Buffalo Healthcare Pharmacy- Kabalagala
- Home queen grocery store: Kabalagala
- Light Shoppers Supermarket – Kajjansi
- Majex Pharmacy – Kajjansi
- Kasumba Square- Busega, Kampala
The Fight Malaria/Roperfree partnership was set up to assist the global efforts against malaria. The partnership is not affiliated with any political party or group, but rather exists for the good