Inside the ‘Traditional’ Tribal Wedding Ceremony That Still Takes Place in Kenya

Chris Pleasance, Daily Mail, December 10, 2014

This is the heartbreaking moment young girls in Kenya are sold into arranged marriages for a dowry of livestock as part of a traditional ceremony which marks their passing into womanhood.

Clad in tribal jewellery and with their hair tied up in braids, some of the women can be seen struggling as they are hauled away, traded by their fathers for 20 goats, three camels, and ten cows.

Many of the girls, who are members of the Pokot tribe, are not aware they have been bargained away until their husbands come to collect them after spending a month in isolation before the ceremony takes place.

Pokot

Often their parents will keep the details of the marriage hidden for fear that their daughter will run away if she finds out about the deal they have made.

As part of the ritual, which lasts a day and night, the village men will also select a bull from the herd of cows which the women will punch into submission before it is executed with a spear-thrust to the heart.

This particular ceremony took place in the bush around 30 miles (50km) from the town of Marigat in Baringo County which is home to around 133,000 plains Pokot.

Many of the girls will be as young as 14, despite Kenyan law now forbidding childhood marriage. As with many tribal customs, however, strict adherence to tradition is considered more important than complying with the law.

The Pokots developed their social structure and practices in order to maximise their chances of survival of each household in an often difficult and hostile environment, but they are coming to be viewed as barbaric and unacceptable in modern-day Kenya.

During the ceremony the girls will sing and stay standing from the afternoon through out the night and the morning after. At the end of the ceremony, the girls and the boys of the community dance together, supervised by elders.

While the images show the girls’ shock and distress at what is happening to them, it is unlikely to be the first time they have suffered hardships at the hands of their parents and tribal tradition.

The Pokot people are also known to practice female genital mutilation, a practice whereby parts of a woman’s sexual organs are removed using scissors, a razor blade, or glass before they are sewn up and have their legs bound together until the wounds heal.

The tradition is carried out at a much younger age than the forced marriages, in the belief it will help to keep the girls pure until the time comes for them to undergo the ceremony that will see them become women.

However, as the ceremonies are usually carried out by unskilled quack doctors operating miles from any hospital and with no anesthetic or antibiotics, deaths are common due to blood loss or infection.

If the girls do not die, then the stitches can cause them terrible pain and discomfort for the rest of their lives, especially during childbirth.

As with child marriage, the practice has now been outlawed in Kenya, with a maximum penalty of life in jail if a girl dies, but so far there have been no successful prosecutions.

Between Kenya and Uganda there are around 700,000 native Pokot speakers, with the vast majority living in West Pokot county.

Pokot society is largely divided in two between the hills Pokot, who live in rainy uplands and are mostly farmers, and the plains Pokot, who roam the dry lowlands and are mostly cattle herders.

Topics: ,

Share This

We welcome comments that add information or perspective, and we encourage polite debate. If you log in with a social media account, your comment should appear immediately. If you prefer to remain anonymous, you may comment as a guest, using a name and an e-mail address of convenience. Your comment will be moderated.
  • Henry Higgins

    I can’t even read this whole article…my eyes glaze over at the female castration part…
    UGH. No wonder there are race realists when I simply preach separation.

    • phorning

      Some refugees living in the United States take their daughters back to have them mutilated. These people are barbaric. I don’t know who originally said it, but Africa is a hard place to help.

    • Who Me?

      What I find it hard to fathom is the fact that it is the WOMEN who do this FGM to their own daughters, or if they don’t personally do it, they are the ones who make all the arrangements and payments to have it done by some filthy old crone living in a mud hut (who hasn’t washed her hands since 1966.)

      FGM
      “Breast Ironing”
      Sexual slavery
      Child brides
      From the feminists we hear ^crickets^ because “it’s their culture”. Please God, let them take their culture and go back to their ancestral ‘Mudderlan” never to darken the shores of Western lands again.

  • JackKrak

    Sorry, but feminists don’t have time to condemn this or the culture that promotes it – they’re too busy protesting on college campuses in support of rules that force guys to get verbal and probably written consent for each stage of sexual contact.

    • connorhus

      Cause ya know the White Male Patriarchy was the most terrible, controlling and barbaric myth to ever walk the landscape of the Feminist imagination.

      • Whitetrashgang

        Yes I forgot we should send Obama and every feminist there,hope and change we can believe in.

    • Triarius

      This is why I consider most feminists a joke. They do not tackle the really issues of the world, they sit back in the safest corner of the globe and complain to those that helped them. It’s like an anti-racist moving to San Francisco, they should try Detroit or Oakland. But they, like most feminists, are complete hypocrits.

  • Whitetrashgang

    I am way more concerned for the Bull, under the B-52.And it is exactly where Obama should the leader, and then he can let in all the illegal aliens in Kenya from God knows where.

    • propagandaoftruth

      I bet that place smells awesome.

      • Whitetrashgang

        Yes it does, more awesome than anyones underwear ever has.

  • “Wedding”

    They spelled “prostitution” wrong.

    • phorning

      It’s more like slavery.

      • Max

        No no; only whites can be blamed for slavery. This is just a “developing culture” issue.

  • MekongDelta69

    Was this article about Africa or DIE-Troit?

    Never mind… They’re the same.

    P.S. I’ll take the bull.

    • JohnEngelman

      The article is about Africa. Those people seldom get married in Detroit.

      • NoMosqueHere

        Yes, at least this poor african girl’s children will know who their father is.

  • [Guest]

    We all know that Africans are barbaric in their native habitat. But African-Americans, even with all the advantages they derive from white people, are even more savage.

    >>>traded … for 20 goats, three camels, and ten cows

    No way! They’re much too expensive at that price.

    • evilsandmich

      Yeah someone got taken for a ride there.

    • OS-Q

      Even assuming cull prices that would be a least a few thousand dollars worth of animals. I think I’d rather keep my livestock and have an intact girlfriend.

    • Ron Cheaters

      You got that right!

    • LHathaway

      The boys fetch nothing, I’ll bet. Unfair to boys.

  • ghettovalley

    If American blacks were isolated and left to their own devices, how long do you think it would take them to revert to this level of primitive savagery?

    • Reynardine

      If Haiti is any indicator, some of the more disturbing voodoo practices emerged almost immediately after the rebellions against France.

    • Jim

      Yesterday.

    • LeonNJ

      I think you’re right. If left to their own devices, they would first fail at governing. Once the system is destroyed, anything will go at that point.

    • Fed Up

      If Whites would totally disappear — it would only take a century to reduce Blacks to the cultural level they had 25,000 years ago. But then I could be overly generous in my estimate.

  • E_Pluribus_Pluribus

    “Many of the girls, who are members of the Pokot tribe . . .”

    Curious about the Pokot, I went to YouTube and typed “Pokot”. Near the top of the listing, I found a 7 minute video with almost 8 million hits entitled “UNTOLD STORIES FGM POKOT PT 1” You will have great difficulty watching all 7 minutes, but you will not likely forget the experience.

    • Reynardine

      The demonstrations on the dummy are just revolting.

  • FozzieT

    It is such a shame blacks in America must live under such harsh and cruel conditions compared with their African brethren.

  • B.A_2014

    African women have past puberty by fourteen, therefore to call it child marriage is factually incorrect.

    This is the sort of diversity we should be dropping into middle class white neighbourhoods.

    • Max

      They will want to bring every one of them here and support them and their spawn forever. We don’t need any more primitives.

  • libertarian1234

    I’m amazed that some do-gooder bunch hasn’t rounded up a few thousand of these people and relocated them to rural areas as they did with Somalis who practice similar rituals in Tennessee.

    The spark that ignites this multicultural tinderbox of flakes, oddballs and crazies throughout this country isn’t going to have to be very strong.

    But it’s going to burn VERY brightly.

  • Reynardine

    Some liberal, somewhere, is wondering how to import them en-mass into the US right now.

  • IstvanIN

    In a perfect world this would just be an interesting anthropology article about a primitive tribe in National Geographic. It really isn’t any of our business. They should be allowed to live in their natural state. Some black widow spiders eat their mates and then, when the eggs hatch the babies eat mom. Should we attempt to breed that behavior out of spiders? This is just further proof that each race and ethnicity should be allowed to live among its own kind in its own fashion.

  • B.A_2014

    There is a very good audio of Kevin Alfred Strom on ADV this week, reading sections of negroes in negroland. After hearing it, this sort of behaviour doesn’t surprise me.

    • Douglas Quaid

      What’s ADV?

      • B.A_2014

        American dissident voices.

  • MannyR

    Ever wonder what Michael Jordan, Oprah Winfrey, Russell Simmons and Curtis Jackson would be doing right now if it weren’t for the original sin of American slavery? The answer is above.

  • Albert

    Africa has been selling slaves to the global market (Europe and the mid-east) since the 1200’s. Sure, they traded ivory, hides, and other such junk, but their big money maker was slaves. That some sell their young for a mere dowry should surprise no-one. There are some parts of Africa where slavery exists to this very day, but secondary education for the young in our nation would never dare breathe a word of it.

  • Scott Rosen

    But, but… I thought the Marxists told me all cultures were equal!?!? I thought this was supposed to enrich us. I thought we needed this diversity to be strong. I thought multicult was a strength!?!?

  • Americaandthewestshouldbewhite

    What a horrid negroid culture. No wonder we have the problems we face today.

  • Massif1

    In the 3rd world countries women are considered “things” – sometimes you can even trade them. The barter system to trade slaves, in this case women, is not new in sub-civilized cultures.

  • M&S

    Welcome to the jungle…it get’s worse here everyday.
    1. Is it a dowry when the Husband pays it?
    In white cultures, it used to be that you had to give money/good and land -to- the husband to get them to take the girl off your hands. Of course it started a new family and it compensated his family for the loss of his skilled labor.
    2. In Sparta there once was a custom whereby the men would ‘sneak in’ to the parent’s home and take the wife to be through ‘violent kidnapping’. Given how Spartan women were taught to fight, this must have been largely ritualized to cover what would in fact be termed an elopement and whirlwind romance under modern social conditions because…
    3. In Sparta, for the first twelve years of the marriage, a man was expected to remain in his mess hall/barracks where he was trained and could apply for full membership around 20-23. A process in which any little slipup could see him be disavowed in an instant (kissing goodbye all hope of becoming Homoloi as a citizen ‘Equal’, at thirty).
    4. In Sparta, visiting the wife was thus allowed under the assumption of conjugal grace /but/ the marriage would not be publically acknowledged until he left his barracks and if there was no child in that time, the woman could apply for annulment and try with a new husband to become pregnant (child bearing was THE duty of Spartan women).
    5. In Sparta, as an alternative to this process and to keep the loyalty of the young by not poaching out of age group when a woman died in child birth (the only way she could have a named tombstone and there are plenty of them), a man might indulge in wife swapping with a close colleague so as to build a household from his wife’s labors on her back while still fulfilling his primary military duty in trade for giving a man who had only daughters or even no children, one last chance to leave a legacy.
    6. Again, in Sparta, it was expected that, if you were not already, at thirty when you retired from the barracks life, you would quickly marry and produce heirs so that you could enjoy the privilege of voting or serving as a magistrate and Equal. Spartans were forbidden the industrial and trade arts as post-service economic means and while given a section of land to till, did not know a thing about farming after a lifetime spent learning how to kill (another wifely duty as management of slaves and household…).
    7. This obsession with reproduction was of course because Sparta was a warrior state in which as many as 20 percent did not even survive the Agoge` or ‘upbringing’, begun at birth, to weed out the weak. If not cast over a cliff, the would be given a trip, at 7, to the temple of Artemis Othia to be flogged until unconscious. If they flinched, they could be denied training. If they showed cowardice by refusing this rite of passage, they could be killed outright (cowardism was a crime right up there with treason in Sparta).
    Why do I give a comparison between white primitivism and black equivalents? Because selling women as chattel is nothing new. But our barbaric past served a purpose _in the past_ to keep our population fit under conditions where simple loyalty was less a given than /expected/ because you were part of something greater than yourself.
    Today we do not practice such behaviors but we also do not have the rituals by which a station in society became an assurance of acceptance within it.
    And our numbers fail and our lands fade from our control because we do not think of them as ‘us’ and ‘ours’.
    Africa is a hole. Nobody will challenge for right of possession in a landscape which is 50% desert and 30% ‘trying real hard’. Yet… If you go to Africa a thousand years from now, failing a global disaster like a cometary impact or solar storm, it is likely that the people will still be there.
    Will we? What would the Spartans have to say to us for having fallen so far from their vision of a perfect society?
    That which abides, wins.

  • Magician

    And female genital mutilation…..

  • ghettovalley

    I would imagine that Atlanta and Baltimore would be some of the first in line to fall. It’s a shame what they have done to these once prosperous, safe, and beautiful cities.

  • Bill Moore

    Hello,

    Who gave them the clothes?

    When I worked for National Geographic, the photo crew would hand out pants, shirts and dresses to the Africans so that people watching the videos would not be offended.

    How about if we stop feeding them, and just let them die out?

    Just My Thoughts,
    Bill Moore

  • Wim Kotze

    Europeans may have prohibited these practices, but it most certainly have not stopped. Check out any South African newspaper, and you will read about corpses mutilated for “muti”. And the honorable his excellency the president bought five wives who are kept at state expense. Thats multicultural democracy under black rule.

  • Guest

    This is common among bantu tribes.