Sale of elephant dung skyrockets in Namibia over rumors that it treats coronavirus

The sale of elephant dung as a so-called cure for coronavirus has skyrocketed in Namibia despite lack of scientific research or approval.

People in Namibia use elephant dung as traditional medicine, a rumor that it now cures coronavirus has resulted in a high demand.

The spokesperson for the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism, Romeo Muyunda, cautioned visitors visiting national park picking up elephant dung without a permit.

Collecting elephant dung elsewhere outside protected areas is not restricted.

“We want to caution collectors to do so safely and without harming the animals,” he said.

Namibia police General Sebastian Ndeitunga said legally, people cannot be charged for being in possession of elephant dung, unless they are found inside national parks without permits.

“An elephant is a protected animal, but there is no law protecting elephant dung,” he said, adding that the police cannot stop the sale of the dung.