The Latuka tribe of South Sudan where men kidnap girls they want to marry before asking for asking for her hand in marriage.

The Latuka tribe in South Sudan is known for its strong defiance of many forms of religious penetrations and other cultures, including marriage. Over the years, they have not changed their marriage tradition despite great criticism.

In many other parts of the world, there is usually a gentlemanly ceremony of handing over a woman to a man, mostly by the father of the bride-to-be, after both the man and the woman have agreed to live together.

However, when a man from the Latuka tribe desires to marry a girl, he has to first of all, kidnap her from her family home and thereafter, return to the family to officially ask for her hand in marriage.

The suitor asks the girl’s father for his daughter’s hand in marriage, along with elderly male relatives who accompany him.

With the girl still in his possession, her father is left with a choice on whether or not to agree to the proposal by this suitor. The response of a “yes” or “no” from the father comes with its separate ceremonial activities.

If the girl’s father agrees to the proposal from this suitor, as a way of showing his appreciation, he is expected to beat his prospective son-in-law. This action explains that the man is willing to be beaten for her. It’s about the sacrifices he’s willing to make for the woman he loves.

However, if the father’s response is “no”, the choice is left in the hands of the suitor: he decides whether to return the kidnapped daughter or chooses to go ahead to marry her regardless.

Many have argued on this practice for long, wondering if it is right for a woman to be kidnapped and left without a choice to decide if she wants to be with a man or not. But others believe that what the Latuka do is similar to what happens in the Western world

Why the Maasai spit on the newborn babies.

The Maasai tribe can be found in Kenya and Tanzania. And they sure do have some strange customs that will leave you shocked! One of such is their mode of greeting.  Members of the tribe spit as a way of saying hello. Aside this, when a baby is born, it is the custom for men to spit on the newborn and label him as bad in order to ward off evil spirits.

The tribe believes that a baby is cursed or become cursed if it is praised.  Massai warriors can also be seen spitting in their hands before shaking the hands of an elder.

Spitting at someone in most cultures around the world is seen as rude or uncivilised but not for the Maasai people, who live in Kenya and northern Tanzania.

Courtesy: Google

For these people, spitting is a sign of respect.

The Maasai spit in their palms before shaking hands which indicates giving a blessing.

Courtesy: Google

Parents, friends, and family members spit on newborn babies in order to wish them good luck and a long life.

Courtesy: Google

It is documented that during Maasai weddings, a father blesses his daughter by spitting on her forehead and breasts.

Courtesy: Google

Spitting among the Maasai, who often lead a semi-nomadic life, is seen as a cultural norm although many anthropologists have condemned it as there is the tendency to spread diseases throughout the tribe.

Additionally, they are also famous for drinking fresh animal blood.

BANYANKOLE: The tribe in Uganda which allows a bride’s aunt to sleep with groom before marriage and test the bride’s virginity.

How much influence should aunties have on their nieces? In many African cultures, aunties provide counselling to their young nieces as they age from adolescence to adulthood. When it comes to marriage, these aunties prepare their nieces for the challenges that lie ahead.

But for the Banyankole people in Southwestern Uganda, the aunt had more than the above, especially during the marriage.

The primary responsibility of the aunt was to confirm that the groom is potent and that the bride has defended her virginity before the marriage is consummated. As a potency test for the groom, the aunt was sometimes required to have sex with the groom for confirmation of his potency and virility.

She also had to “test” if the bride is still a virgin before they are allowed to consummate their marriage.

In other traditions, the aunt is said to go as far as listening in or watching as the bride and groom have sex in order to prove the couple’s potency.

Inasmuch as this outdated practice may sound weird, it shows how the people of Banyankole, particularly the Bahima tribe hold virginity in high esteem.

As soon as a Banyankole girl is eight, she goes through a lot of restrictions to prepare her for marriage.

When other children her age in other cultures are out having fun and playing, a girl in this part of Uganda is mostly kept indoors, where she is fed beef and millet porridge and forced to drink milk in large quantities so that she becomes fat.

Being fat is synonymous with beauty among the Banyankoles.

When she starts developing breasts, she is also asked by her parents to abstain from sexual activities.

It is the duty of a Banyankole father to find a wife for his son as he pays the bridewealth as well. This consists of some cows, goats and pots of beer, depending on how rich a person is.

Once the bride price is paid, the marriage preparations begin. On the wedding day, there is a lot of feasting at the bride’s home, where the father is expected to slaughter a bull.

At the bridegroom’s home, there is another feast where the marriage is consummated. This is after the bride’s aunt has “tested” her niece’s purity and slept with the groom to also check his potency.

Why the Mursi women in Ethiopia have a lip plate.

Female members of the Omo Valley’s Mursi tribe, which number less than 10,000, begin wearing the discs in adolescence.

Surrounded by mountains between the Omo and Mago rivers, the home of the Mursi is one of the most isolated regions of the Ethiopia.

Across the world, there are people who have not been swayed by the technological advancement but have rather maintained their traditional way of life. Some of this kind of people are found around Lake Turkana and the Lower Omo Valley in Southern Ethiopia.

The Surma people is made up of three ethnic groups: The Mursi, the Suri, and the Mekan people. The Suri and the Mursi share a similar culture. Their women’s beauty is determined by how large their lip plate is.

A Suri Girl. Photo credit: Igor Kruglikov/ Barcroft India

Lip plates are usually made of clay or wood and range between 4 and 25 centimeters. To be placed on the lip, two or four teeth are removed before the lower lip is cut to fit the lip plate. This lip plate process is usually done by their mother when they attain puberty. To stretch the lip, a ceramic disc is placed after the cut and will remain until the initial cut has healed before it is placed with another slightly larger disc. The process is repeated so that the lip will become large enough to accommodate the first lip plate which is about 4 centimeters.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

Apart from designing their skin with incisions and patterns which are sometimes painted, the lip plate is seen as a boost of one’s self-esteem. The lip plate tradition is valued by both parents because it indirectly means that the father’s number of cows will increase when he is paid her dowry. Any man who must marry a Suri or Mursi lady has to be wealthy because her dowry usually falls between 40 cattle (for the small plate) and 60 (for the large plate).

20-year-old Ataye Eligidagne has the largest lip plate in the world. It weighs 19.5cm. Photo credit: Daily Mail

Because of the self-worth and importance attached to it, some girls increase their lip plate. To their delight, they are often allowed to design her lip plate.

Most times, the women don the lip plate when their intention is to look more appealing. An example is when they want to serve the meal of their male counterpart; as part of their beauty regime or during special ceremonies.

However, their men only have to undergo body painting as their form of ritual. Each scar on the man tells a story: He has fought and killed an enemy.

What a proud people!

Eritrea too Strong for Harambee stars as they beat them 4-1

The defending champions went down in the semi-final after sailing past the group stages without losing a single match

Eritrea have booked a spot in the Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup final after beating Kenya 4-1 in the first semi-final played at the StarTimes Stadium in Lugogo on Tuesday.

READ ALSO:Young women in Kibera are writing their street harassment experiences on roads to highlight the damaging nature of sexual harassment.

An own goal by Oscar Wamalwa followed by other strikes from Abel Okbay, Michael Habte Gebremesqel, and Robel Kidane were enough to force Kenya out of the competition.

Harambee Stars got the lone goal from Wamalwa’s second-half strike.

Eritrea surprisingly started the first half with more energy than Kenya and could have gone on to score in the ninth and 12th minutes. In the first scenario, Ali Suleman Ibrahim was blocked by Samuel Olwande as he ran at full speed across the left side of the pitch.

Kenya’s captain Joash Onyango saved the moment when he made a vital tackle against his Eritrean counterpart Robel Teklemichael who was through on goal in the second instance.

With Eritrea attacking relentlessly, Teklemichael blasted over the bar in the 17th minute but were not denied in the second scenario where Kidane’s shot deflected off Wamalwa and the ball sailed into the net for the opener in the 19th minute.

Francis Kimanzi was forced to make a change in the 28th minute as he replaced Roy Okal with AFC Leopards’ attacking midfielder Whyvonne Isuza. Okal was making his first start since the tournament began but could not last the full minutes of the first half.

Wamalwa’s effort in the 39th minute was clinically blocked by the Eritreans who had now retreated to deal with an insurgent Harambee Stars. Kenya got another blow in the 41st minute when winger Kevin Kimani got injured and his place was taken by Kariobangi Sharks’ fullback Daniel Sakari.

Harambee Stars went down again in the 49th minute after Okbay found the back of the net to shock the defending champions once more. Okbay’s long-range strike was taken with such precision that goalkeeper Odhiambo could not deal with it.

Kenya responded quick and halved the deficit when Wamalwa’s strike evaded everyone to land into the net. Gebremesqel took just six minutes on the pitch to stretch the lead for Eritrea in the 66th minute.

Gebremesqel had replaced Eyob Weldeyohannes at the hour mark and his shot from a tight angle was enough to down a retreating Harambee Stars.

Kidane got the fourth for his side in the 75th minute with Kenya completely struggling to deal with Eritrea’s forward surge in the last 20 minutes of the showdown.

This is Eritrea’s third consecutive win against Kenya after the 2-1 win in 2006 and a 1-0 result in 2007. Both came during the Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifiers.

Young women in Kibera are writing their street harassment experiences on roads to highlight the damaging nature of sexual harassment.

Young women and girls in Kibera, one of Africa’s largest informal settlements, are writing their street harassment experiences on roads and canvasses to highlight the damaging nature of sexual harassment.

Warning: Some readers may find part of this article distressing

Zubeida Yusuf has lived in Kibera, in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, all her life, and for as long as she can remember, street harassment has been a part of her life.

READ ALSO:Governor Sonko bundled into police chopper after dramatic arrest

“Men will say things like: ‘You’re very fat. Is your mother a butcher? Did God use his last piece of clay on you because you have large breasts and a big behind.’

“It’s a lot for us to take in when we walk out here (in the streets),” says the 22-year-old.

But over time, Ms Yusuf has learnt to fight back and she is helping other women in Kibera claim their voices back in situations where some women say they feel powerless.

Using chalk and markers, in a campaign dubbed “Chalk Back”, Ms Yusuf and other girls and women are writing down their experiences of street harassment.

The campaign, they hope, will spur conversations around the damaging nature of street sexual harassment.

“Nowadays, when the men insult me, I stop and ask them to their faces, why they are insulting me. However, for underage girls fighting back may be harder,” she says.

“That’s why campaigns like these are important. More of us need to push back and tell people it is not okay to speak to women this way.”

“Respect my body,” one message on the road screams.

Others, written in Swahili, reveal more disturbing messages.

“Unaringa, wewe ni vajo” (You think you are too good for us, yet you’re still a virgin).

“Chura hii” (slang for prostitute, which also means frog in Swahili).

Caroline Mwikali, who is 20 years old and also a Kibera resident, confesses some of the slurs used against her have cut deeper than the perpetrators realise.

“You really can’t walk down these streets without a man saying something nasty to you. Sometimes we’re even likened to animals.

“It affects one’s self esteem. When I sit by myself, I wonder: ‘Am I really as worthless or as ugly as that person has said I am?'”

A photo depicting women that they should be valued just as much as their country is valued
Image captionWomen say rampant street harassment makes them feel unsafe to

But it’s not just the emotional cost of street harassment that is the problem.

No-go areas for women

According to the UN, the lack of conclusive and comparative national data and policies on street harassment within countries is one among many of the challenges when it comes to combating the problem and ensuring the safety of girls and women in public spaces.

A 2019 Plan International street harassment survey of five cities revealed that less than one in 10 of the women and girls interviewed reported their experiences to the authorities.

This is because women were unsure of what exactly authorities could do, and whether street harassment could be termed as a “serious” crime.

Experts agree that street harassment continues to curtail women’s participation in public spaces socially and economically. Often, women are forced to modify their behaviour to fit in.

“There are certain places and scenarios I avoid. When I see a large group of men congregated somewhere, I won’t pass there,” says Ms Mwikali.

“There are also places, especially in the evening that will never find me outside. Women have been raped in some of these areas.”

Measles epidemic ravaging the D.R.Congo has killed more than twice as many people as the country’s ongoing Ebola outbreak

The measles epidemic ravaging the Democratic Republic of Congo has killed more than twice as many people since the beginning of the year as the country’s ongoing Ebola outbreak, the United Nations has warned, calling for a strong response.Measles, a preventable disease, has killed over 5,000 people in the central African nation since the beginning of 2019, while nearly 2,000 have died from Ebola during the same period, according to new figures released by UNICEF on Wednesday.Over 90% of the total measles deaths, or nearly 4,500 people, were children under the age of 5, according to UNICEF. The organization called it “the world’s largest and fastest-moving epidemic” at the moment, noting that it has spread to all of the country’s provinces.”Violence and insecurity, lack of access to healthcare and shortages of vaccines and medical kits in the worst-affected areas have meant that thousands of children have missed out on vaccinations, with potentially deadly consequences,” UNICEF Representative in the DRC, Edouard Beigbeder, said in a statement.

READ ALSO:The royal drums of Burundi

The highly contagious virus is passed through direct contact or through the air and starts with a high fever. Young children who are malnourished, have vitamin A deficiency, or whose immune systems have been weakened by HIV/AIDS or other diseases are most susceptible to the disease, the World Health Organization said.The measles epidemic in the DRC comes as the country battles a devastating Ebola outbreak — the largest and deadliest since the outbreak that spanned several countries in West Africa from 2014 to 2016 and claimed the lives of more than 11,000 people.

Agencies and partner organizations have distributed more than 1,300 measles kits containing antibiotics, rehydration salts and other medicines to the worst-affected areas but stressed the need for a comprehensive long-term plan for fighting the disease. Beigbeder said despite the high death toll, the measles epidemic hasn’t drawn as much attention as the Ebola outbreak.”These measures can only ever be a short-term solution, as significant investment in strengthening DRC’s national vaccination program and wider health care systems is crucial to guarantee the health and wellbeing of the country’s children,” Beigbeder said.

Mistrust and fear halt containment

Among the challenges in containing the measles outbreak in the DRC, just like containing Ebola, is overcoming mistrust among local communities and educating parents and residents that vaccinations could save lives, the WHO said.In addition to the ongoing fighting in the country, “cultural beliefs and traditional healthcare practices also often get in the way of vaccinating children against measles and treating those with symptoms, Beigbeder said.”The key is to reach every single child, no matter where they are.”

A UN peacekeeper patrols in DRC’s North Kivu province, where many armed groups operate and regularly attack villages.

Health workers killed in the violence

The continuous fighting in parts of the country presents an additional challenge for medical and aid workers, some of whom have lost their lives in the violence.Two overnight attacks Wednesday into Thursday in eastern DRC killed four workers responding to the Ebola outbreak and injured five others, the WHO said in a statement Thursday. The attacks took place on a shared living camp in Biakato Mines and an Ebola response coordination office in Mangina, WHO said.

The royal drums of Burundi

The royal drums of Burundi have been considered sacred since ancient times, and a symbol of unity.

READ ALSO:Manchester United demolish Manchester city at Etihad stadium.

With wild dancing to a furious beat, booming wooden drums echo over a hill in Burundi – an ancient sound, a sacred tradition and once a symbol of unity for the kingdom.

Youngsters dance around the circle of 15 drummers led by 79-year-old Antime Baranshakaje, still sprightly and waving spear and shield, himself the former drummer of the last king of this small central African nation.

Here on a hilltop in Gishora, about 100km east of the capital, Bujumbura, the drummers perform. It is an impressive show; so much so that the ritual dance of the royal drums was placed on Unesco’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list last year. “The entire population of Burundi recognises it as a fundamental part of its heritage and identity,” the UN body said.

Today the drums are played for entertainment, but for centuries they were a sacred rite – a powerful memory for a country whose recent history has been scarred by decades of civil war and bloodshed.

“The drum was the symbol of royal power,” says Father Adrien Ntabona, a Catholic abbot and anthropologist. “It was no little thing, nor as commonplace as it is today … For God came through the drum to protect the monarchy and the kingdom, the whole country.”

Indeed, in the Kirundi language, the word for drum – ingoma – is the same as that for kingdom.

Baranshakaje was one of the last to have played for the ancient spring festival of the sowing of the crops before Burundi became a republic in 1966, after independence from Belgium four years earlier. It was the nation’s main festival, celebrated in December to bless the farms.

According to legend, the special drum appeared with the birth of Burundi’s monarchy centuries ago. But the power of the drums was chipped away under Belgian rule, especially with missionaries who sought to replace the power of the king with “the King of Kings, Jesus Christ”, says Ntabona.

Drums were instead used to herald the start of church services and school. The instrument’s power waned further after Burundi’s last king, Ntare the Fifth, was forced to flee into exile in 1966.

“Today at parties people pay to have a drum,” says Ntabona.

Still, the ancient ways of playing and dancing, handed down from generation to generation, remains the same. “Many things have changed,” Baranshakaje says. But the drummer, who has performed in more than 30 countries, quotes an old proverb: “He who strikes the drum sets the pace for the dancers.”

The Maasai tribe

Maasai (not Masai) is the correct spelling of this noble tribe: it means people speaking maa. Masai was the incorrect spelling of the British settlers and has remained in current use. The Maasai have always been special. Their bright red robes set them apart visually. Spear in hand, they are calm and courageous regardless of the danger.

The armed British troops who drove the Maasai from their lands in the early 20th century had great respect for these fearless tribesmen. Up until recently, the only way for a Maasai boy to achieve warrior status was to single-handedly kill a lion with his spear.

MWCT works primarily with the Maasai living the the Kuku Group Ranch. The Kuku Group Ranch is home to around 17,000 people and lies in an important migration corridor of 283,000 acres that is at the base of Chyulu Hills, Hemingway’s, “Green Hills of Africa,”  in between Tsavo and Amboseli National Parks.

This is home for East Africa’s most iconic wildlife including: lions; elephants; leopards; zebra and giraffes. The land contains important resources not just for the people of Kuku, but the habitat reserves, forests that are carbon sinks, and rivers and springs supply fresh water to more than 7 million people living in and around the port city of Mombasa, Kenya’s second largest city.

MWCT’s international team of experts works with the Maasai community on a knowledge-sharing basis to create and implement holistic and comprehensive programs in conservation, health, and education that serve the community, the wilderness, and the wildlife that are so important to us all.

Kenya recognizes over fifty tribes of native people. The Maasai were the dominating tribe at beginning of 20th century. They are one of the very few tribes who have retained most of their traditions, lifestyle and lore. In common with the wildlife with which they co-exist, the Maasai need a lot of land. Unlike many other tribes in Kenya, the Maasai are semi-nomadic and pastoral: they live by herding cattle and goats.

The Maasai have not fared well in modern Africa. Until the European settlers arrived, fierce Maasai tribes occupied the most fertile lands. The Maasai struggled to preserve their territory, but their spears were no match for armed British troops, and their lawyers never had a fair chance in British courtrooms. In 1904, the Maasai signed a first agreement, losing the best of their land to the European settlers.

Seven years later, in 1911, a very controversial agreement was signed by a small group of Maasai, where their best Northern land (Laikipia) was given up to white settlers. Surely they did not fully understand what the consequences of such a treaty were, and anyway the signatories did not represent the entire tribe. With these two treaties, the Maasai lost about two-thirds of their lands and were relocated to less fertile parts of Kenya and Tanzania.

Other tribes of Kenya have adapted more readily to the “progress” of modern times. In contrast, the Maasai have persisted in their traditional ways, so as Kenya takes more land for growing tribes and agriculture, they suffer.

Deadly fire hits Kangkok shopping complex

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