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Meet Favour Michael-Etaba

Our history hero of the week!

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Favour Michael-Etaba

Second runner-up Upper Primary Category

There is a general saying that “your decisions and actions all play a huge part in the bigger picture”.

Meet 11-year-old Favour Michael-Etaba who emerged 3rd place in the Upper Primary School category of this year's Learn History Africa Essay Competition.

Favour showed great promise in her essay and one of the things that first set her apart was her legible, elegant handwriting. Favour's essay told us of the primary ways that medicine had been practiced in Africa - through their indigenous practitioners employing suggestion, incantation, concoction, and remedies based on their knowledge of herbs.

As we know, these methods just like many modern methods are not fool proof, however, they form part of the foundation from which modern medicine was built.

Favour took us on a journey of the African people's ability to innovate. Africans had always found ways to deal with their health-related issues. In her view, these ways were not necessarily scientific, and she suggested that some of the successes may be the result of serendipity. She pointed out how our forefathers were able to develop roots and herb mixtures in the treatment of snake and scorpion bites. It may not seem like a conventional way of treatment or that they were specific in the doses administered, however they were able to come up with successful results that were sustainable.

Furthermore, Favour stated that though herbs and roots are not predominantly used in modern-day medicine, she pointed out that what is presently used is a refined version of the ancient African invention. She believes Africa's ability to innovate is very much alive, as Favour pointed to us in the closing parts of her essay. She drove this point by citing Africa's contribution to finding solutions in the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

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