Residents of Oguya village in Kumi district are still reeling from shock after a bodaboda man and a fisherman swapped their legal wives.
Peter Opoo, a 30-year-old bodaboda rider and Charles Okwii, a 28-year-old fisherman, exchanged their spouses, Leya Ingurat and Deborah Rose Alungat, respectively.
It all began when Leya, the boda boda man’s wife, found out that Alungat had been having an affair with her husband. Leya walked out of her marriage in protest, leaving her husband with their two children aged four and two.
The couple had been living peaceful until the melon that broke the monkeys back — the cheating incident — struck. Their marriage soon began having problems, with daily squabbles and fights.
Leya says Okwii was the husband that God created for her, and she has no regrets for the decision to move in with him after Opoo mistreated her seven months ago, leaving a frustrated woman.
Okwii decided tit for tat is a fair game and tried his luck by making passes at Leya at a borehole as she was fetching water. The two exchanged notes, shared their experiences, and in the process they realised they could work something out.
They discussed the Opoo and Alungat affair, as they consoled each other. They began meeting regularly and one thing led to another, and before long, they became an item.
Insanely in love
Currently, Leya and Okwii are insanely in love. Leya was quoted saying she doesn’t miss her former husband, Opoo, because he used to abuse her and treat her like garbage.
The two men met, and decided to officially swap their wives, but each was to keep their children.
In his first marriage, Opoo had paid four head of cattle, six goats and UGSh100,000 (Sh3,340), as dowry. While Okwii paid three head of cattle, five goats and UGX100,000 (Sh3340).
When Opoo was reached for a comment, he declined to comment on the matter, terming it sensitive. He said the matter had landed him in trouble after unknown thugs attacked him at night, and set his hut ablaze.
Church leaders slammed the swapping saga as immoral and also blamed the couples for blindly adopting western cultures. Local leaders were not left behind in castigating the couples; they took issue with them for going against the Teso culture. Police, on the other hand, said no one had reported a crime of that nature
The most disappointing were the activists and NGOs advocating the rights of women and children, all they had to say was: “These women sometimes lack knowledge on what they do and the men take advantage of them.”
No one noticed that the wives are merely 20-year-olds. The parents should have been the first to be arrested for marrying them off at 16. The next on my hit list would be the husbands for luring the girls out of school.
Village life is hard, and fishermen and bodaboda men are the ‘richest’ men as they get cash on a daily basis.
I do not blame the girls for accepting their fate, as theirs is a cushioned life. They have a full belly at the end of the day and a place to lay their heads at night.
The girl child is brought up to believe that a future without a husband is a hopeless one.
Therefore, regardless of how he treats you, you must remain anchored to him and give him babies in rapid succession to cement your stay in the home. It’s a pity.