I am totally against families who demand exorbitant amounts of lobola.

Lobola is a man’s way to show appreciation to his future in-laws for raising their daughter well.

It’s not a reward and therefore should not be excessively priced as it is not tied to anything more than building relations.

It is tradition that brings order so no daughter hops from one man to another as marriage, through lobola, ties her to her husband. The husband would have proved his mettle by contributing the bride price.

Lobola, in the ancient days, was never ever meant for wealth creation but to advance social cohesion. If a man from the Mnisi family marries a woman from the Chauke family, that woman’s brother would use Mnisi’s cows to pay lobola for a wife from the Sithole family. The Sitholes would use the cows to marry a woman from the Mabuza family and the process goes on like that.

Nobody should marry off their daughter with the aim to buy a Mercedes-Benz or build a nice house. A human being is not for sale. Greedy parents have ruined promising relationships with their obsession with money. Loving young men have been denied marriage by their prospective in-laws because they do not have enough money.

After the lobola negotiations, both families should leave the room smiling.

A woman with a university degree can’t have her bride price hiked because of her education.

The man is not marrying her for her qualifications but for love and to build a family.

This is why even an uneducated woman can have lobola paid for her despite her lack of academic transcripts. It’s for these reasons and many others that lobola should not, under any circumstance, be placed at a figure where the groom feels aggrieved.

Lobola’s not a money-making scheme. Both the payer and receiver of lobola must participate in the transaction with a smile.

Malphia Honwane
Gottenburg, eManyeleti

And surely a family does not want to bankrupt newlyweds in the process? This letter wins R200 today. Call Nthabiseng at our offices to collect. – Deputy Editor