Snakes are usually associated with evil in many African communities. However, they are also seen as sacred by the Luo community of Western Kenya.
A snake by the name of Omieri came to the limelight in the 1990s. It is considered kin to god and a custodian of local cultures and values by the Luo. According to reports, the community believed pythons are a forebearer of good luck so when it appeared to one of the members, she did everything to make sure it is comfortable. She fed it goats and chicken and made it a pet.
Omieri’s life was however cut short when she was publicly executed after debates between traditionalists and religious groups.
In Taita, the Kenyan coastal area, another snake called Sadu was also revered. The people believed that it would render punishment or reward onto the community depending on the people’s behaviour. It is also considered a custodian of all resources, including a tree called Chamisa, which is believed to change the sex of a person who goes around it seven times.