In many African cultures, an aunt plays important roles among them, being advising young nieces as they get through life stages including adolescence and marriage.
In Uganda, the case is a little extreme as one’s aunt is not only used to advise a new bride but they also have to have s*x with the groom to prove his ‘potency’.
Additionally, the aunt has to test the bride’s‘ purity’ before the bride and groom are allowed to consummate their marriage. This custom has fast gone
extinct but now in some hinterlands, the tradition directs the aunts to prove the couple’s potency by listening in or watching as the couple engages in sexual intercourse.
Inasmuch as this outdated practice may sound weird, it shows how the people of Banyankole, particularly the Bahima tribe hold virginity in high
esteem. As soon as a Banyankole girl is eight, she goes through a lot of restrictions to prepare her for marriage.
When other children her age in other cultures are out having fun and playing, a girl in this part of Uganda is mostly kept indoors, where she is fed
beef and millet porridge and forced to drink milk in large quantities so that she becomes fat.
Being fat is synonymous with beauty among the Banyankoles. When she starts developing breasts, she is also asked by her parents to abstain from sexual activities. It is the duty of a Banyankole father to find a wife for his son as he pays the bridewealth as well.
This consists of some cows, goats, and pots of beer, depending on how rich a person is. Once the bride price is paid, the marriage preparations begin.
On the wedding day, there is a lot of feasting at the bride’s home, where the father is expe
cted to slaughter a bull. At the bridegroom’s home, there is another feast where the marriage is consummated.
This is after the bride’s aunt has “tested” her niece’s purity and slept with the groom to also check his potency.