‘We have departed from roora norms’

CULTURAL activists and socialites have condemned the new way of paying the bride price (lobola) which they have seen as a departure from the norm.

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Nowadays, swag and colour have become the in-thing at traditional marriage ceremonies where in-laws invest a lot in costumes, cakes and even outdoor catering.

Television personality Rebecca Chisamba strongly condemned it saying the day is a family thing and no outsiders are supposed to be there.

“The day is only for the close family where rituals are done and friends are not even supposed to be there.

“People are now moving in the wrong direction in the name of being in the 21st century.

“People are now over-doing the whole lobola thing, going in the wrong direction,” she said.

Mai Chisamba, as the talk show hosts is popularly known, said it was high time families keep secrets to safeguard marriages.

“A lot of secrets are revealed on the day like for instance this boy was married before or maybe the girl is told about her real parents, and these secrets need to be protected.

“Most of these marriages are not even lasting because they will release about certain things when they are already married.

“The only friend that is allowed is the family friend (Sahwira wemhuri) and most of the time these sahwiras know and keep a lot,” said Mai Chisamba.

She added:

“Extended families are now being destroyed in the name of kuroyana and yet people welcome outsiders.

“Well, this surprises me because no one knows what will happen in the future and if parents happen today, son-in-law will have to look for these extended family to finish paying up.

“People are now commercialising roora, westernising it all.”

Mbira player and cultural Diana “Mangwenya” Samkange said our norms and values as Zimbabweans have been diluted.

“Tsika and magariro have been diluted.

“The way we are doing it now is one of the reasons why we are having a lot of break-ups.

“Back then, roora raisumwa to the ancestors so that they would protect the marriage and the newly-weds.

“We no longer have our own identities because people are borrowing the roora ideas form the West African traditional weddings and yet the weddings that we do after roora are a western thing,” she said.

Socialite and musician Felistas “Mai Titi” Edwards said roora remains a sacred thing which should be respected in every way.

“I am of the 21st century but I do not believe in this way of roora.

“I believe roora is a family thing which is supposed to be done pachedu, zvinehunhu.

“It has to be something with respect and appreciating the parents and the family rituals,” said Mai Titi.

She added:

“Having bridesmaids, attires and cakes on lobola day is just too much, something that should be reserved for the wedding.

“What if you do all the cakes and attires and then vakwasha don’t show up, what will you do?

“These after party celebrations are not even necessary; they will show other behaviours which are not good.”

UK based socialite Olinda Chapel-Nkomo who got married recently said this whole thing has left us without an identity.

“We no longer have our own identity as Zimbabweans.

“We are just borrowing everything without the knowledge of what it really means or why we are doing it.

“The whole significance of roora is lost and now roora is meaningless,” she said.

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