Vol. 21, #4
April 9, WARRIORS COME UP EMPTY HANDED
Young warriors look for glory and recognition by killing a lion or a buffalo. As happens only very seldom, warriors of the Ndamaragi age group went off to the forest to hunt a lion. They trekked to the stream called Enkeju ng’iro and ranged as far as Ndutu. These warriors had gathered from the different areas and numbered eighteen on the hunt. At about seven o’clock in the morning they entered the forest of Mlima Matiti on the edge of the Serengeti. For a couple of hours they combed the underbrush looking for lion and eventually came upon a lioness. The warriors surrounded the thicket where the lion had taken refuge. They tied bells to their legs to confuse the lioness when she would make a break for it. All of a sudden a game police car was seen in the distance. Then, because they had no permission to kill a lion in the Conservation Authority of Ngorongoro, they hid themselves in the forest. After the game scout’s car disappeared, the warriors again began to look for the lion. They hunted through the forest of Mlima matiti all the rest of the day but found no further sign of the lioness or of any other lion. They dispersed and returned their home villages empty handed. Although these hunts are very few and far between and have no impact on the lion population, chalk one up for our precious lions of Ngorongoro.
April 19, NAISHARUA OLDUMU
A lucky meeting with Br. Frank O’Shea in a shop in Arusha has radically changed the prospects of one of our Osotua Maasai girls. I have written of Naisharua in the past. She has a serious diabetic condition has been living here with us while attending Mbarway Secondary school. Now she has finished Form IV with excellent results and had been posted by the government to Korogwe Secondary school 400 kilometers to the South for her two years of junior college. I have been very worried about sending her so far away because she needs to have her sugar levels tested twice a day and get insulin injections in the morning and at night. Also a special diet is required to keep her numbers within reason. Very fortunately, the Christian Brothers are now adding Form V and VI to their already excellent Edmund Rice Secondary school near Arusha town. Brother Frank readily accepted Naisharua into their new Form V program. The junior college facility has all new buildings consisting of Biology, Chemistry and Physics laboratories, dormitories, and classrooms. In addition to these facilities, there is a computer lab with internet access. They have hired excellent staff and agreed to figure out a diet for Naisharua with the school cook. Also, Naisharua will be able to keep her insulin in the brother’s frig. Brother Frank, the headmaster, and the other staff look to be a very dedicated group of people. What a lucky break for Naisharua and for me. I would have had to make the 800 km. round trip to Korogwe regularly to make sure that Naisharua was getting along well.
April 21, SCHOOL GIRL PREGNANT
Nasee enOlMasoi of Losilale was till a few weeks ago 5th grade student at our local primary school. When her parents realized that she was pregnant, they began to look for the one responsible and discovered that it was a young man by the name of Toret OleSurumbu from Losilale near Endulen. Some days after Toret realized that he was discovered and that people were looking for him, he up and ran away West to Shinyanga. The head teacher of our primary school called the parents of both Nasee and Toret to his office and questioned them. On finding out that both sets of parents knew that Toret was the culprit some time before he ran away, the head teacher took all four to the police station. The parents of the girl were locked up for four days and then released. The parents of Toret remain in jail and there is an ongoing case against them and their son. The parents of Toret have been told by the court that when their son Toret gives himself up, they will go free.
April 23, FORCED MARRIAGE FOR SCHOOL GIRL
At the primary school of Mokoromba near the crater, Namelok, the daughter of Olkitok was a student in the 4th grade. Her parents took Namelok out of school and married her to Oltikika, a young man from Olbalbal on the edge of the Serengeti. The girl was taken by force to the village of her husband. Her father received cattle in bride price and Namelok started married life with Oltikika. Her parents were happy that their child was out of school and that they had received the benefit of a significant number of cattle. Time passed and, Olkitok, the father of Namelok got very sick and soon died. After about three years Oltikika and Namelok were not getting along any more and frequently fighting over many things. Namelok ran away to the home of her parents, but since her father had died, she met only her mother at home. Namelok told her mother that she wanted to return to school. The girl went to the police to report that years earlier she had been forced to leave school and obliged to marry Oltikika. Namelok was allowed to return to school and continue in the 4th grade. A court case was then brought against her mother and Oltikika, the man that she had been forced to marry. Now the case continues in the court without as yet any resolution. The next hearing of the case will be at the end of this month of April.
April 24, CATTLE RAID
Cattle’s raiding has become an everyday occurrence in our area of the Ngorongoro highlands. Esere about eight miles from Endulen is a favorite among the Sukuma raiders from Lake Victoria. The day before yesterday early in the morning soon after the young boys had driven the cattle off for the days grazing a Sukuma raiding party attacked the herd of Oltetia. The young herd boys fled to raise the alarm and the raiding party took the cattle driving them toward the Western Serengeti and Lake Victoria. The twelve Sukuma warriors had not traveled far with the cattle before the young boys had spread the news of the raid to the village of Oltetia and others in the neighborhood. Warriors gathered from every direction and followed the tracks of their cattle and those of the Sukuma warriors. The Maasai warriors with three rifles in addition to their spears and bows, caught up with the raiders before they reached the boundary of the Serengeti. A fight ensued and one Sukuma was killed outright by a bullet from a Maasai rifle. Another was shot in the knee and hid in the bush, while the remaining ten got away to the West. As the Maasai gathered their herd for the short journey home, they came upon the wounded Sukuma. Some wanted to kill him outright, but the more merciful prevailed and carried him to their village where the police were called. When the law arrived, they forced the wounded one to give up the names and home villages of the one who had been killed and also of the remaining ten that got away. He was then taken to Endulen hospital where the bullet was removed from his knee. The body of the dead Sukuma warrior was also retrieved from the bush and brought to Endulen to await his relatives from Sukuma, who were called to come and take the body home. The police, having their names and home villages, continue to look for the other Sukuma bandits.
Till next month,