Steep lobola blamed for cattle theft
Some families in the crisis-torn East African country charge a minimum number of 45 cattle in a traditional marriage, which is a tough task for the majority in the a country facing economic challenges sparked by years of conflict.
Victor Lado Modi, Commissioner of Gwor County in Terekeka State, said most parents tended to impose high bride prices on the marriage of their daughters because they considered girls as their prime source of wealth.
“As a consequence, the poor resort to cattle raids to meet the marriage demand,” Modi said during a tour by members of the United Nations Mission in the country.
A chief of Terekeka County, Alphonse Modi Lado, said rivalries over girls triggered an auction, thus raising the bride price and worsening matters.
It is reported when a girl was pregnant, youth from the girl’s side raid the cattle camps from the boy’s side.
“That’s an unfortunate choice of action that often leads to fighting. Marriage should be viewed as a social bond between two families, not as a divisive factor,” said the chief.
Authorities said poverty was partly to blame for youth indulging in cattle rustling.
“Some youth are orphans as the result of the ongoing conflict. They resort to cattle rustling as a shortcut to gain wealth,” he said.
– CAJ News
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