Africa’s Voodoo Supermarket Mystery Explained

In the heart of Togo’s capital, Lome, is a market dedicated to the sale of ingredients which traditional healers say can make magic charms.

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Togo’s Akodessewa Fetish Market is recognized as the largest fetish market in the world, a place where Voodoo practitioner can find anything they need for their rituals.

The practice of voodoo began in West Africa, before being taken to America by slaves, and in countries like Togo, Ghana, or Nigeria the religion is very much alive.

Many people believe healers using animal parts and strange talismans can invoke spirits with their bizarre rituals, and solve their problems. And if there’s one place where voodoo priests can stock up on their creepy supplies, it’s the Akodessewa Fetish Market, in Togo’s capital city, Lome. Just think of it as an outdoor pharmacy where various animal parts, bone statues and herbs take the place of conventional medicine.

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People who practise the voodoo tradition believe that life derives from the natural forces of earth, water, fire and air. Joseph, a healer from neighbouring Benin, says: “This place is like a pharmacy for everybody in the world. When someone has a serious sickness and the hospital cannot help, they come here to the fetish market.”

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