Sunday, May 20, 2007

Religion and infidelity in Kenya

Here's an article sent to me by Ben in Nairobi. (Thanks Ben). It demonstrates how issues of religion and sex vary widely across cultures...

Smitten by the witches of Meru
Last Updated on May 14, 2007, 12:00 am
By Peter Thatiah

Good advice for married men: Next time you lose your national identity card, the first place to look for it is at the local witchdoctor’s den.

Not only are witchdoctors in love with other men’s identity cards but also, it seems it is the latest weapon of combating husbands with roving eyes on the eastern slopes of Mount Kenya.

Armed with wallets stuffed with miraa money, men from this region are some of the most liquid in the country. The season of the second lump payment for tea produce, also known as tea bonus in the area, is even merrier.

Husbands are known to vanish from their homes for weeks after the ‘bonus’ only to reappear after the money has been depleted — never mind that they are hardly ever involved in the tea-picking itself.

This has driven many women to devise drastic ways of taming their wayward husbands.

The recent death of a famed witchcraft master in the Akirang’ondu area of Meru North District has left many men with frayed nerves.

Fame for containing wayward husbands

For the rest of the article:


Ben said...

I see this post is a smashing success. The comments are through the roof. To bad none of you westerners believe this stuff works.

Another Gem from last Saturday's paper - the Saturday Nation. NEWS EXTRA: Prostitution coming nearer home and getting more hi- tech

. . .
It is also here that there are claims of witchcraft to win wealthy clients. Some prostitutes admit that they have occasionally sought the services of witchdoctors to improve their chances of winning rich men. Others are said to have gone to witchdoctors to play tricks on colleagues so as to jeopardise their chances.

A popular story with prostitutes on Argwings Kodhek Road is that of a veteran who is not shy of saying openly that she bewitched her current mzungu (white) boyfriend to the extent of “nabbing his spirit and locking it up in a bottle.”
Says a prostitute also operating in the area: “No matter how much you try to woo that old man, he will never look your side. His eyes are only for that woman, and he takes all his money to her.
. . .
And this could be a warning to men who go out looking for prostitutes; the next time you find yourself drawn to a woman (and your pocket overdrawn) it might not be love, but kamuti [Akamba word for witchcraft].

Another article goes into more detail.

Brad Wright said...

Ah-h-h-h, words to the wise.