Tuesday, March 14, 2017

#Uganda's selling wives for $5.50 a piece is a good initiative - #GirlChild

Like many of you, I was stunned when I found out that my home country now allows women to be sold for sh. 20,000 ($5.50) to husbands who need another wife or are venturing out to get a wife on the cheap.

To understand why this is a good idea, you have to know the culture.

Girls cost a lot of money to send to school and some of them even get pregnant and all your investment is gone in a flash.  So it is better to educate boys who do not get pregnant and drop out of school.

Men who want wives at such a good price are avoiding dowry (bride price) which is 6 cows, 6 goats, 6 sheep, 6 chicken, kanzu for the father of the bride and gomesi for the mother of the bride.  This dowry is costly so who now wants to do it when one can pay the equivalent of one goat for a wife?

You see in our culture, if the man's family pays the above to get a wife for their son, that family will demand for everything to be returned should the bought wife run away due to some misunderstandings like the husband beating her up or cheating on her.

Why the wife for sh. 20,000 is a good idea is because any of our siblings and friends can refund that money in a flash so we shall not be tied down by the man who paid for us.

The other thing is when traditionally if a girl is well educated, the bride price could surpass the norm and become too expensive to the point where the girl's family could not let her escape from an abusive relationship but this new system is minimal cost so the woman will be able to get out of a bad marriage.

Were this selling of Basoga women for sh.20,000 you would have seen all the Basoga women jumping all over it and saying it is not right.  May I remind you that the Uganda Speaker of the House, Rebecca Kadaga is from Busoga.  So is Kasule Lumumba who is the Secretary General of the current ruling party NRM.  So is one witch called Specioza Kazibwe.  And of course opposition has its own Kasumba.  So if such strong and educated women do not speak up against their women being sold for $5.50 a piece, who are we to judge?  Mind you one Kyalya is also from that place.

We now know that all the elected women leaders from Busoga are in agreement for their sisters, daughters and nieces being sold for sh. 20,000 or else they would have spoken up promptly so we must look on the bright side.

The problem which Ugandan men face when it comes to wives is cost.  Why would a man want a woman who has a degree and could read the news and tell him that he has no rights to chase her away from their family home and take all the property?

Why would a man want a woman who says we need to share the chores and the bills?

Effectively, Uganda has now succeeded in dealing with the girl / woman factor.  Why would a parent send you to school when they can get a quick sh.20,000 for you and if they negotiate well, they could get up to sh.50,000 and avoid years of expenses for your education?

Along those lines, I am gonna buy wives for all my siblings and nephews because the price is good.

BUT IF YOU THINK ANY OF MY DAUGHTERS ARE FOR SALE, YOU ARE NOT PAYING ATTENTION.  WOMEN ARE NOT FOR SALE.  WHY WILL UGANDA ALLOW SUCH A PRACTICE?  When the government allowed agencies to send our daughters and nieces to Arab countries as slaves, we did not think much about it.  Now this is real.  Our kids are being sold right in Uganda and what does Kyambadde have to say about it?  Business as usual.

Martha Leah Nangalama
Moncton, Canada

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