Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Home Rombo

The region called Kilimanjaro today, borrows its name from the tallest mountain in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro. Of the six districts mentioned above, four traditionally had the Chaga settlements which are Hai, Moshi urban, Moshi rural,and Rombo, and the other two which have historically been of Pare settlements, namely Mwanga and Same. However, during colonial rule, in the late 19th century and to the mid of 20th century, the region was divided into two main districts: Moshi district, which comprised all the areas settled by the Chagga people on the slopes of the mountain, and Pare district, which was a Pare tribe settlement. The region, from earlier times, had been settled by the people collectively called the Chagga, the Maasai, Wakwavi and Waarush (in the lower parts of Mount Kilimanjaro), and the Pare on the Pare mountains. These have been intermingling, trading and even fighting from time to time for various socio-political reasons. Later, other tribes also migrated to the land.

Is one of the six districts of the Kilimanjaro Region of Tanzania. It is bordered to the north and east by Kenya, to the west by the Hai District and to the south by the Moshi Rural District.

The Rombo Districts contain a large portion of Mount Kilimanjaro.
According to the 2002 Tanzania National Census, the population of the Rombo District was 246,479.

The Rombo District Commissioner is R.R. Mushi and the District Executive Director is Theresia Mbando.

Geographical Location:
Kilimanjaro region as its name reflects, the famous snow covered
Mount Kilimanjaro is within this region. The mountain has two
peaks Mawenzi and Kibo and its highest peak Kibo, towers as high as 5,895 meters above sea level snow capped throughout the year. Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain - Africa second to Mount Everest. Mount Kilimanjaro and the Pare mountains (2,000 - 2,500m.) from the backbone of the region, running through the middle of it in a lengthwise direction.Kilimanjaro region is located in the north eastern part of Tanzania Mainland. It lies south of the Equater between latitudes 20 251
and 40 151 . Longitudinally the region is between 360 251 3011 and 380 101 4511 east of Greenwich. The region has a common border with Kenya in the north, to the southeast it shares border with Tanga region; to the south and west the region borders with Arusha region.

Ethnic Groups:
There are two main ethnic groups in Kilimanjaro region. These are Chagga, who are the majority, and Pare. There are other small ethnic groups who reside in the region, like Wakahe and Wakwavi.
Within these two main ethnic groups there are subethnic groups sometimes identified by their different dialects. For example, Wagweno among the Pare who speak Kipare and Kigweno reside in the northern part of Pare. The different dialects among the Chagga which are identified according to the geographical identity. For example, Kichagga Kimachame may be differentiated From Kichagga Kibosho through their way of speaking and other linguistic characteristics. However, Kiswahili is the main language for communication among the various groups. Socially there is little separation between the two main tribes and inter marriage is a common phenomenon. Invariably both tribes are energetic, industrious, thrifty and enterprising.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Kurya Folklife

The Kuria are an ethnic and linguistic group resident in the Tarime,Musoma,Bunda and Serengeti districts of the Mara region in Northern Tanzania, and the west and east districts of Nyanza Province in southwest Kenya. In 2006 the Kuria population was estimated to number 609,000, with 435,000 living in Tanzania and 174,000 in Kenya.

The Kuria people are mainly agriculturalists and pastoralists, with the Kenyan Kurians leaning towards agriculture and the Tanzanian Kurians more towards pastoralism. The Kurians in the Serengeti district are distinctly pastoralist.
The Kuria are closely related to the Kisii people of Kenya both in language and physique. They are said to have been one people until a vicious attack by the Maasai in the early 19th century scattered both populations in different directions. This apartness has led to the formation of distinct dialects which are clearly understood by both peoples. The Kuria people are divided into about 16 "subtribes" or clans, namely: Nyabasi, Bakira, Bairege, Bagumbe (who reside in both Kenyan and Tanzanian districts), Batimbaru, Banyamongo, Bakenye, Baikoma, Bamerani, as well as several others. All this subtribes or clans are present in the kisii tribe of Kenya.
The Kuria tribe is also related to the Zanaki tribe of the Mara Province in Tanzania. They share some cultural aspects.
One of the most famous Kurias is Shadrack Manga, a former Member of parliament.Sammy Masaana Marwa(Sammy Sundays) is another famous Kurian who is also the first Kurian to win a green card through the normal green card lottery and immigrated to the USA,this man comes from Chinato Division,Tebesi sublocation,Nyabosongo village.

The Kuria people have various customs. Some of the include circumcision for both sexes. Traditionally circumcision was done at the age around 13 years, just when puberty begaun. To this date, various organisations are working to ensure the tradition of female genital mutilation is abotted. Also due to increased spread of HIV/AIDS during circumcision rituals due to the use of the same tools, many families are opting to take their children to hospitals and the traditional cutters have now opted to use individual razers for each person during circumcision. After the cut, the boys or girls that have undergone the practice are normally led back home by fellow villagers amidst singing and dancing and money is pinned on to their 'shukas'. The shukas are one piece coloured sheets that the circumcised tie around themselves so as to let the blood drip freely to the ground. Once circumcision has taken place, according to tradition, the boy or girl is deemed ready for marriage.
Kuria common girl names include - Robi, Gati, Boke, Nchagwa, Nyangi, Weigesa, Mbosiro. Kuria common boys names include - Wambura, Gati, Chacha, Marwa, Mwita, Matiko, Meremo, Makena, Kiribo.
Kuria are from the Bantu Language group in Kenya. They are traditionally farmers, mainly planting maize, beans and Cassava as food crops. For cash crops, the Kuria community mainly grows tobacco due to the near location of the BAT tobacco company. They are also cattle herders and have gotten into some scrupples with the neighbouring tribes, mainly the maasai, over cattle rustling.