GIYANI: Traditional healers have been urged to refer critically ill patients to medical doctors. Chairman of the Mopani Traditional Healers in Limpopo, Frank Chauke, said healers shouldn't be motivated by money.
"Our aim is not only to get money, but to heal people as well. If you can't treat certain diseases, just pass the patient over to those who can," said Chauke while addressing a three-day traditional healers' conference held in N'wamatatani village outside Giyani.
Chauke, who is commonly known as Xikhavele, said traditional healers should admit there were certain illnesses they couldn't cure due to the superior technology found in hospitals.
He said lives could be saved if patients were referred to medical doctors in time.
"For instance, we traditional healers can't (use drips on) patients. Therefore, every patient who needs (a drip) should be referred to a clinic or hospital as soon as possible - don't wait until the patient reaches a stage where they can't be saved," he said.
The conference, which included healers from as far as Cape Town, is a yearly event aimed at encouraging them to share ideas and expertise, including addressing challenges encountered during the course of the year.
Asked to comment on those who sold or used muti to harm others, Chauke said: "Those are not true healers, (but just) individuals driven by greed to make money."
"If they were true healers, the ancestors would be angry with them (for using harmful muti) and would probably take away their power to heal," warned Chauke.
He said it took years to qualify as a healer and warned the public against those who claim to be qualified after just a few weeks of training.
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