NIGERIAN pilgrims keep trooping to the mystery lake at Nanchi in Enugu State in the belief that its muddy waters have miraculous healing powers and solve all their socio-economic woes.
On November 11 last year, some Fulani herdsmen heard an explosion on the evening of and on getting to the point where the explosion occurred, they saw some water gushing out of the ground. According to the herdsman, it was some miracle water prophesied in Mecca and they immediately gave some of it to a blind colleague who reportedly gained his sight there and then.
Since this incident, the Nanchi mystery lake has turned to a pilgrimage centre, with people coming from all over Nigeria to bath themselves in its murky waters. Hundreds of people visit the dirty polluted lake to bath and swim with the hope of experiencing some miracles, while family members take their sick relatives there for healing.
From all indications, people who come to swim in the lake end up going home with the ailments they came with, as no one has since reported any miracle cure. There are now fears, however, that Nanchi and the neighbouring communities could face an outbreak of cholera and other infectious diseases soon unless the government brings this hazardous situation under control.
Desperate for divine solutions to their plethora of woes, these pilgrims zealously swim in this polluted mystery lake, despite the fact that its water is filthy. They are ready to compromise basic health principles in their quest for miracles, particularly the infirm.
Enugu State government authorities have so far turned a blind eye to the situation, refusing to intervene by sealing the lake off or telling people not to drink its filthy water. Bishop Emmanuel Chukwuma, the Anglican bishop of Enugu diocese, has cautioned those rushing to the lake to have a re-think because according to him, the spirit of water cannot save them.
Bishop Chukwuma said: "People should testify in public that this water has healed anybody. They should stop this unnecessary misinformation.
“People are rushing there out of ignorance, which goes to tell you that they are caged and imprisoned by problems and they are seeking for solutions. How many people have come out to testify to the authenticity of whatever miracle that happened and tested by a doctor?"
According to geologists, the lake is situated at a pressure point in the water table which gives way now and again. Chief Dominic Onuigbo, the traditional prime minister of Ameke-Nachi said the lake called Ogbongwu locally, has appeared three times over the last 80 years.
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