Another lobola rant

Not a week passes by without me hearing a story of a mukuwasha who got up and said no, thanks but no thanks, marry your own daughter.

The only way to change this exploitative roora practice is for the guys to stop accepting such nonsense. $10,000? KEEP that money, guy. Lobola is only exploitative and expensive because us gents are paying it. More are refusing, and that heartens me to the core.

Honestly, how are you willing to sell your daughter into a debt-ridden household? Where do they start their family from? Minus 10 grand? Where does he get the money from?

Does he get a bank loan, and for two years he’ll be looking from his payslip to your daughter, wondering what the fuck he got himself into?

Are you okay with your daughter walking into a house of debt and poverty? Are you willing to saddle your daughter with a disgruntled chap, who will not accept it if she does a single thing wrong?

What if she has “a headache”? That’s a perfect recipe for marital rape.

Roora is meant to be a token of appreciation, not a get-rich-quick scheme. So, I get a 24-month bank loan just to marry your kid? Then what? As far as I’m concerned, if you get charged high to marry and accept it, ndizvozvo. You’ve been had. More gents need to refuse this shit

EVERY WEEK I hear of somebody saying well, can’t afford that, marry your own daughter. Guess what happens after? They come back crying, calling, come back, let’s talk, don’t be like that.

In this day & age, if a man has the balls TO COME AND MARRY YOUR KID, be grateful for that, because others fire & forget. Then you abuse him?

Personally, my daughter isn’t being bought. Bring a bottle of Blue, meat & your friends, we braai, we chat, you go away. THAT’S ALL! I won’t put my kid into a debt-ridden house, to be abused and treated as chattel.

Culture shifts take time, but here’s a start. We need to get back to the days of lobola as a token of appreciation, not the exploitative extortionate fleecing it currently is. When the guy would make an appropriate gesture to his in-laws, who would accept that without grumbling.

There’s only one way to do that – gents, we need to take that power back.

So comrades, hear me well. RAMBA kucharjwa some extortionate price. Refuse to be abused. Walk away, it’s not worth it comrades. REVOLT!

And another thing, ladies. You’re complicit, because no family charges a guy without you telling them what his story is. If someone gets hit hard, it’s because you’ve been tuning your people that he’s got money, he can afford it.

So it’s time we men simply said no. Either by refusing to marry in the first place (yeah, scorched earth policy) or simply getting up and walking away, if the charges are exorbitant.

These days, it’s as if you’ve committed a crime by committing to a woman.

So boys, memorise these four words – “What? Chengetai mwana wenyu”.

43 Replies to “Another lobola rant”

  1. So true Mr Black. Wish all guys can really have balls to stand up for themselves and not subjected to the mediocrity in these times

  2. I agree with your sentiments, but would only object to the sweeping generalisation you make about women being somehow responsible for this exploitation. Not being naive, but no woman would conspire with her family to overcharge her husband-to-be if she knows the financial toll it will take on them as a couple. So I would argue that this is the exception rather than the norm.

    1. Fair enough, but a woman has to be responsible for how her family treats her person. It’s because of her that guy is there, if he’s mistreated, is she absolved of blame? Completely not.

      She has the responsibility to make sure her family respect her dude, and life partner. There are no hapless damsels anymore … or are there?

      Are you not independent women? How do you then become helpless bystanders when your life and happiness is being determined? No.

      1. We are talking about a culture here which holds little regard for a child’s opinion. Now in that context, how is the girl going to start dictating to her father, brothers etc on how they should conduct this ceremony, which I might argue is very much male-dominated? She will be put in her place. The only was she can avoid such a scenario would be to elope, if she dares. As you know that’s another big taboo in our culture, which could lead to the couple being disowned by their families.

        1. Oh well, if you’re willing to accept this culture as male-dominated, and women are simply by-standers whilst their future is decided, that’s alright.

  3. As much as i agree with Joe Black, i get a sense that you are a little too one sided. I must highlight i am no expert on Zimbabwean Tradition nor hv i been through the process but i think the reason we as men end up getting exploiited is a lack of understand iof the actual process of kuroora. As you highlighted roora was meant to be a token of appreciation but from an accounting perspective roora was actually meant to als cover the cost of the wedding which as the bride groom u were not expected to put much into but this practice has of course slightly disappeared while the roora bit has remained and become over inflated (please do correct me if i’m wrong).
    Also on your recent article you said that there is a direct correlation between the practise of lobola and spousal abuse, … lol … this comment is based on wat evidence of course, i’d be really keen to read that piece of research

    1. LOL all you have to do is Google “lobola and domestic abuse” for yourself, if you were so “really keen” to find research.

      And traditionally, roora wasn’t meant to cover no damn wedding, it was just a token. That wedding bit came into it, as other people started doing that bit, and Westerners came with weddings and such nonsense.

      But anyway, things evolve, in this case, it’s evolved into a bad thing. So yeah, get Googling, read up on the various studies, maybe you’ll understand.

      1. For the covering of wedding cost I did highlight that it was from an accounting perspective, you pay lobola, brides family pays for the wedding e.t.c.
        And REALLY articles from some journalists with no significant figures to support their claims is what you a taking as evidence. Although i’m nt saying u r wrong there needs to b a little bit more hard evidence nt jus several cases which people will then declare a special cases not a true representative of the whole pouplation.

        1. Here’s some references, if you can’t bother to find them yourself.

          Sokwanele A gendered insight into the lobola debate

          States of Conflict: Gender, Violence and Resistance – Susie Jacobs, Ruth Jacobson, Jennifer Marchbank (old book, but through interviews with South African women under apartheid, directly linked GBV with lobola). You’ll have to check Google Books

          The commercialisation of lobola in contemporary Zimbabwe (Takunda Chabata) also valuable, but limited.

          Also read this if you wish, from a religious perspective.

          United Nations also, shall I carry on? Read this, search for lobola and read those figures.

          A little more and I’m bored now.

  4. I agree. we shouldn’t allow this to be honest. yes we’re valuable property but roora should be a token of appreciation. chete.

  5. and pedzezvo they say, wedu mwana anoita white which they expect you to foot again in “a resonable time frame after lobola”..its getting out of hand..spot on @joeblack

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