News Analysis

Trip to a Land where Wife Stealing is a Tradition

There are many cultures around the world and each of them has different beliefs and practices that they abide by on a daily basis. It is these beliefs and practices that make them who they are. This also separates them from other cultures surrounding them.

In South Sudan’s eastern part in East Africa, there is a tribe named Latuka that lives in the mountainous region.

This particular tribe is located in the Equatorial part of South Sudan and has a population of about two hundred thousand people.

The people of Latuka or Otuho tribe generally farmers who keep large herds of cattle, sheep, and goats. Also, they do subsistence farming and grow crops like sorghum, maize, groundnuts, potato, and tubers.

Their belief and customs are quite different from the rest of the world, especially the wedding traditions.

Among the Latukas, there is a wife stealing tradition that has been in practice for ages.

Isn’t this not strange? Yes, it is.

In the Western world, whenever people decide to get married, they would seek permission from their parents and after some customary ceremonies would have taken place and eventually the couple tied the nuptial knot.

But the wedding custom in Latuka tribe is quite different and very typical. When a man wants to marry a lady from Latuka tribe, he would just kidnap the girl from her home.

After this act, the groom goes to the girl’s father along with his relatives to seek the blessing for the wedding.

The Father has to respond with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’. If the father says yes and gives his blessing to the union he then proceeds to beat his son-in-law to show consent. In case, father says no then the man has the liberty to either return the girl to her father’s house or go against the wish of the father by marrying her, it is all up to him.

Adebukola Aluko

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