This Is How The Bukusu Community Culturally Tamed Childlessness In A Marriage

By Lynnet Okumu / Published February 3, 2022 | 4:05 pm




KEY POINTS

In case a woman realized her husband was weak to make her pregnant; she would have a secret talk to her mother-in-law who would later talk to the father-in-law about the issue.


Bukusu

KEY TAKEAWAYS


The nonagenarians and octogenarians never looked at the issue of infertility or conceiving one-gender children as a normal unsolvable thing. Neither did they believe that it was impossible to solve the issue of barrenness among the couples.


The Bukusu people are one of the seventeen Kenyan tribes of the Luhya Bantu people of East Africa residing mainly in the counties of Bungoma and Trans Nzoia.

They are closely related to other Luhya people and the Gisu of Uganda. Calling themselves BaBukusu, they are the largest tribe of the Luhya nation, making up about 34 percent of the Luhya population.

Socially, the Bukusu are popularly known nationally for their traditional circumcision ceremony. The ceremony which is held at each even year is practiced in public to let people prove how might they are.

Economic Activity

Economically, the Bukusu’s practiced mixed farming since the colonial reign came into Africa.

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Today, they farm mainly maize for subsistence and sugar cane as a cash crop in the Bungoma area, as well as wheat in the Kitale area.

Politics of Bukusu people

Politically, Bukusu’s acted as a resistance community in Western Kenya when the fight for independence in African states began, led by the traditional late Prophet Elijah Nameme.

The community currently has public figure politicians like senator Hon. Moses Wetang’ula, Eugene Wamalwa, supreme justice Smokin Wanjala, Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka, former crème de la crème intelligentsia in NACTAD Mukhisa Kituyi among others.

The infertility issues

The nonagenarians and octogenarians never looked at the issue of infertility or conceiving one-gender children as a normal unsolvable thing. Neither did they believe that it was impossible to solve the issue of barrenness among the couples.

In case a woman realized her husband was weak to make her pregnant; she would have a secret talk to her mother-in-law who would later talk to the father-in-law about the issue.

The father-in-law would then talk with his son and confiscate his health and normality status. In case it could be found the son’s weapons of war had problems, a solution could then be sought urgently.

The daughter-in-law with the aid of her mother-in-law could talk.  She was then asked to choose one married brother-in-law from the same family to secretly, seriously, and greatly impregnate her.

After the infertile son has talked to his father, he would be advised to have a night running session in a far village for 5 – 6 hours.

The man would have the belief that night running confuses demons and evil spirits to rest in the far village.

Back in the house, his wife would be having a mighty bed match until she gets pregnant. In case the woman needed another child of the other gender, she would again politely ask her husband to go night running for them to have a female child.

This was known as khuchenja lirango – to mean changing the thigh. The woman would have secretly talked to her brother-in-law again to come for the second time and bless her womb.

On the other hand, if a woman was the one having a problem with conceiving, she’d get a lady for her husband to marry.

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This was so interesting but unfortunately, this cultural practice has died among the community members due to various factors such as religious doctrines and beliefs, the outbreak of diseases,  increased population in the society, unfaithfulness, and dynamics in parental issues.






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