By A Correspondent- Traditionalists and herbalists have condemned the use of tobacco snuff or ‘bute’ by some people as a remedy for Covid19.
Most of the people are resorting to bute with belief that it kills the virus, but several traditionalists have condemned it’s use.
Herbalists said moringa and zumbani are better remedies for Covid-19.
Herbalist, Dr Gilbert Chawanda said bute has been used for centuries to consult ancestors and treat various ailments, such as clearing the throat, but the snuff does not treat Covid-19.
“Traditional snuff is mostly used for consulting ancestors and sometimes to clear the throat.
“Yes, it can alleviate the virus for a moment, but we cannot sorely rely on it because we have other better medicines such as zumbani, kirina varicide and mufandichimuka.
“I will not recommend use of snuff as it can end up clogging the lungs; I am using some herbs, kirina varicide, for my patients and the powder is a mixture of various local herbs,” he said.
Another traditional healer, Sekuru Amos Kafera said just like any remedies, bute should be taken with caution as there was no proof that it could treat Covid-19. “Bute has got nicotine and should be taken in small doses because it might cause heart dis – eases or cancer.
“We don’t encourage people to sniff bute all the time because it is addictive due to the nicotine components.
“Even when our ancestors used bute for various ailments, they administered it in small doses. “During the liberation struggle, we used bute to consult the ancestors and we used it in small amounts,” he said.
The Ministry of Health and Child Care is on record saying there is need for scientific research to ascertain the effectiveness of traditional medicines, especially when it comes to the Covid-19 pandemic.