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5 NIGERIAN MARRIAGE CUSTOMS THAT WILL MAKE RETHINK YOUR CHOICE OF LIFE PARTNER

Marriages are a big deal in Nigeria today. Because of the fact that we all come from different ethnic backgrounds, weddings are carried out in different ways across the countries. However, certain tribes have particular wedding practices that might be out of your comfort zone and may just make you rethink your choice of partner because of where he or she comes from. Here are a few of them:

1) The Fulani Sharo Tradition

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The Fulani Sharo groom undergoes rigorous feats before he can wed his wife to be. The Sharo tradition is held sacrosanct by the Fulani people but is not mandatory to some subgroups while others don’t necessarily observe this ancient practice. 
Sharo tradition is a public flogging of a potential groom before his nuptial; it is also practiced during important occasion like chieftaincy coronations, sport, and rite of manhood ceremonies. Nomadic Fulani like other tribe members are proud warriors instilled with discipline, courage and hard work so potential grooms must prove their worth in terms of strength, resilience and endurance.

2) Igbo marriage custom of fund solicitation.

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The cost of funding an igbo wedding is one that has brought up a lot of debate over the years. The expensive nature of igbo marriage is affecting many eligible suitors who want to marry. It has led to the collapse of many courtships after the man is presented with a list of things to provide which in some cases runs into hundreds of thousands of Naira and he realizes he does not have the funds to cover the budget presented to him.  In some parts of Isiala Ngwa South area in Abia state, potential suitors are asked to pay as much as between N350, 000 and N500,000 for the purchase and settlement of the lists presented by the girl’s family. After this, the groom will still have to cough out between N500,000 and N600,000 to cover the cost of the traditional wedding proper.
Lists usually presented include tubers of yam,  stock fish, goats, several wrappers for the mother-in-law, attire for the father in-law which also includes cap and walking stick. And in the course of inspecting these items, some of them are some times rejected for not being up to the size the family and kindred want. After considering all these, many Igbo men just decide to postpone the idea of marriage or more preferredly, marry outside their tribe where they can have rest of mind.

3) Yoruba traditional wedding act of prostrating

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If you are an intending groom and you want to marry a Yoruba girl, you have to prostrate to the woman’s family as there is no escaping this tradition. Whatever imported lace material you are putting on does not concern anybody, your chest must touch the ground. Usually, after the prayers are said, the groom dances in with some of his friends, and prostrates a total of four times.
On the first two occasions, he prostrates for his new in-laws with his friends, before prostrating before them alone the third time. During this third prostration alone, the two families stretch out their arms to pray for him. Before he takes his seat, he prostrates one final time with his friends, but this time around, before his own family. Your expensive clothes and accessories will have to pay the price of your marriage.

4) Igbo custom of not marrying until the eldest son has married

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This is an igbo tradition whereby the eldest son in a family has to marry first before other men are allowed to. Deferring to the elder sons is seen as a sign of respect in igbo land. Sorry if you are in love with a guy who is the fifth child and his eldest brother hasn’t even thought of settling down any time soon. You might have to wait for a long long time before you get a ring on that finger.

5)Virginity test in Yorubaland

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The virginity test is one ancient Yoruba tradition that has been a very controversial one. It occurs after the wedding ceremony when the groom is expected to consummate the wedlock. This ceremony is done to determine if the bride was a virgin when she was married off. If the bride is deemed a true virgin, she gets gifts of high value from both families and a symbolic message of a white cloth stained with blood (Ipon/Eje) is taken to her family, which is received with joy.
In the event that the bride does not pass the test and it is discovered that her virginity is no longer intact, a euphemistic message of (half boiled/roasted yam) is sent to the bride’s family. This spells doom for the woman. All and sundry will know her status and she will have to live with the shame of that revelation and the disgrace that will be meted on her family from then on.

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