The Oodi rainmaker

Leungo Mokgwathi
RAINMAKER: Thomas Leroy Thomas

Convinced he stopped Cyclone Freddy

Foresees another cyclone looming in Central Africa

Predicts a dry ploughing season this year

In February and March this year, for five devastating weeks, Malawi was battered by Cyclone Freddy, one of the strongest and longest-lasting tropical cyclones on record.

In total, the cyclone is estimated to have claimed 1, 434 lives.

It is said – by the man himself admittedly – that the death toll would have been even higher had it not been for the supernatural intervention of a 38-year-old Zimbabwean, who happens to be Oodi village’s most prominent rainmaker.

Thomas Leroy Thomas is adamant he was the spiritual force that travelled to Malawi and stopped Freddy to save even more lives.

Intrigued, The Voice recently made the 20km journey to the village of Oodi to meet with Thomas, a glorified Prophet, healer and rainmaker, to learn more about his divine gift and the impact it has had.

We also hoped to get a prophecy on what to expect in the upcoming ploughing season.

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For reasons known only to him, Thomas picked Ceaser’s Bar, a liquor establishment situated in the heart of the village, as the meeting point.

After waiting for about 30 minutes, the lean man finally arrives, clad in a pair of jeans and a greyish turtleneck sweater despite the scorching heat. Besides a small monochromatic bracelet, there isn’t much to identify him as a spiritual vessel. ‘Perhaps that’s the modern spiritualist’s regalia,’ we think to ourselves.

Steering us away from prying eyes, Thomas directs us to the back of the building; and so begins the ‘tale of the Oodi rainmaker’.

“I was born in Kwekwe, Zimbabwe, which is where I lived until 2022 when God called me to Botswana. From as early as age six, I knew that I had a gift but I didn’t take it seriously until age 22, when I fell ill to the point of near death. The elders around me realised that my resistance to the calling was getting me sick,” he explains.

Putting his gift to use, Thomas started practicing as a Prophet and faith healer in his community, soon realising he had ‘supernatural powers’ that could make and stop the rain.

“The powers weren’t so useful in my community because there were already a number of rainmakers so I did not use them much, until God told me of a land called Botswana which was in need of my assistance.”

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He is keen to point out that unlike many of his countrymen who flock to Botswana seeking a better life, his journey was influenced by “God’s will for him to better the lives of Batswana.”

We are later introduced to two elderly men who testify to Thomas’ divine powers, citing their own experiences.

“My daughter was on her deathbed and we had lost all hope after doctors at Deborah Retief Memorial Hospital said that she was unrevivable,” shared one of the men.

He further revealed that all it took to bring his daughter back to life was a bucket of water, a face cloth and a short prayer from Thomas.

The Voice later learn Thomas apparently healed the child from Epilepsy, which she had been suffering from for years.

The two elders also vouch for the healer’s rain-making prowess.

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“There was a grave drought in our village last year and after consulting the village Headman, this man was given permission to make it rain and he did. One minute it was dry and then it suddenly poured for days until he stopped it because it was turning to floods.”

Enthralled, we ask for a demonstration. Sadly, Thomas warns that if he did so without permission, God and the ancestors would bring ‘doom to the village’.

He does, however, promise to call our crew once the Chief gives him permission to make it rain, adding the said Kgosi was currently unavailable.

Keen to continue his story, Thomas then shares his most divine experience, the reason we are in Oodi in the first place: bringing an end to Cyclone Freddy.

“People were dying and I knew I was the only one that could stop it so I teleported to Malawi and commanded the rain to stop and it did. If you go to the mountain I was on, you can still see my footprints there,” he says, speaking in the same manner one might describe popping to the supermarket to buy bread.

His tone darkens as he warns of another cyclone looming “on the left hand side of the African continent, mostly in the Central region.”

He warns that if nations do not engage him to stop the cyclone before it begins, there will be much damage.

On the subject of this ploughing season’s weather forecast, Thomas predicts, “There will be rain, but not enough for planting of crops. Plenty of rain should be expected towards the end of autumn and the beginning of winter.”

In his view, despite the low rains coming, farmers who are committed and consistent will produce a good harvest.

Thomas is convinced he has been sent to “set Batswana free from the desert which is growing.”

In addition to his divine rainmaking powers, the colourful character is a certified martial arts and yoga instructor, a licensed physiotherapist and faith healer and holds a certificate in Business Management.

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