Two cousins who were recently caught red-handed while engaging in a sexual relationship in Eastern Uganda have been subjected to flogging in a cleansing ritual aimed at shielding their community from generational curses.
The two from Kumi District, who are both in their forties, were flogged by residents of Oogoria village after they were “arrested” in latst Saturday an overnight raid.
The two were found in the man’s house following a two-week surveillance after suspicions that they were involved in a sexual affair against their clan’s norms which forbids sex between relatives.
According to Villagers, they were apprehended at 2am while in the act.
Thereafter, their clan heads staged a cleansing ceremony where the man and woman received several strokes of a cane after which they paid a fine of a goat for the enforcers to have a feast to “wash away the shame they underwent on seeing their nakedness at the time of their arrest”.
The two were then forced into a grass kiln that was set ablaze, and were then allowed to flee the kiln as the clan enforcers administered beatings.
Mr John Charles Omongole, the chairperson for Inomu Ikomion clan said that the cleansing rite is for people who commit incest.
“When the fire engulfs the entire kiln, the offenders are expected to run in different directions, and during that moment, the clan soldiers will follow them with some lashes,” he explained.
Omongole added that if by coincidence the two run in the same direction, that implies that they have not repented, so another kiln will be set up and the exercise repeated.
According to him, they believe that the act of torching the kiln helps burn curses, adding that the ashes remaining after are poured into the nearest stream.
He also disclosed that their findings indicate that the duo started their affair last year when they were in Serere District.
Mr Omongole claimed that children who are born out of incest are considered outcasts and a cause of clan curses.
“As members of the Inomu Ikomion clan, we didn’t want to have such an outcome, and we had to intervene,” he said.
The duo, after the cleansing were forced to make a pact that they will not repeat the offence and will observe the norms of the Teso community.