BOPOLU, July 6. – Thirty nine-year-old Bendu Kamara who runs a local restaurant in Gbapolu’s Kongbah District has been taken into custody by the police on an accusation that she cooked centipede in public food.
Centipedes are not a consumable creature as per regular Liberian meal log. The predatory anthropoids based on research conducted, are however, consumed based on painstaking advice, as a form of medication for the treatment of ailments including epilepsy, tuberculosis, apoplexy and swelling among others in traditional Chinese medicinal treatments.
In Liberia the venomous multi-legged creature which has one pair of legs per body segment is associated with filth and bad omens.
Bendu, according to our reporter, was complained to the police by a man who had gone to her shop and said he found the creature in the food he was served.
The police say ‘her action’ amounted to ‘public threat’ and that it was a ‘criminal offense’.
Howbeit, the businesswoman has not responded to the allegation, as the desk sergeant of the police detachment say they could only give out the charge sheet.
Bendu’s “cooked bowl” shop in the district is mostly frequented by residents of the area, but this development could mean a blow to her business, some locals say.
Nonetheless, others are calling for a thorough investigation of the incident, suggesting the possibility that the man who sounded the alarm could have planned a ploy intended to crumble the woman’s ‘enviable’ finished food business.
“She cooks well. Every morning we rush to buy food from Bendu – sometimes we are not lucky enough because the food would finish, and then she would cook another round,” a resident said.
Meanwhile Bendu awaits court trial in Bopolu where she is expected to answer to the allegation.
By Shadrach D. Brown, Liberia Correspondent