During the early times particularly during the time when people practicing a different way of healing apart from what the church prescribe, is labeled as a witch doctor. A witch doctor is the only person in the villages that is capable of performing healing rites and ceremonies and use herbal potions with medicinal value to cure patients in the earlier times. They are often referred to as shamans and healers, but can also refer to all folk healers in many parts of the world. Before the church came to power, the witch doctors are very influential and powerful. They perform rites to appease the gods and spirits. They facilitate animal sacrifices to cure the disease of a person. If their treatment is unsuccessful, they often attribute it to the displeasure of the gods or the patient’s inability to please the gods. Thus, they were able to maintain their high status in the society despite the failures of their treatments.
For many centuries, witch doctors have been very helpful in the community life given the fact that they are the only individuals who can assist people in terms of health problems. They are instrumental in the development of modern medicine through their discoveries of the medicinal value of some herbal plants. As a form of payment, witch doctors received food, clothing, weapons and other valuable things from their patient. They are however, slowly diminishing from the face of the earth with the advent of modern medicine. But witch doctors still exist and are still highly regarded by his or her people.