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coronation_of_chiefs [2018/07/29 08:10] (current)
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 +\\ \\ **4.1 Coronation of chiefs among the Acholi**\\ The researcher witnessed the coronation of the chief of Koro in Omoro District and recorded the event as it unfolds. Koro is composed of five main clans including Pageya, Ibakara, Lamuto, Abwoc and Lapainat. Out of the five, Lamutu is the royal clan, meaning that the chief of Koro comes from Lamutu clan. In order to bring harmony among the five clans, coronation of the chief is done by all the representatives of the five clans.\\ On the coronation day, the chief holds a royal spear which is one of the respected regalia among the Acholi\\ The chief is moved from his living room and taken in front of a royal hut, usually a grass thatched hut symbolising the tradition of the Acholi from where the coronation ritual is performed.\\ Marching to the royal hut, the chief is escorted by his wife and the council of elders (Luwang rwot) who come from different clans. Both the chief and the celebrants must be bare footed.\\ As they are moving to the royal hut, the //Bwola// dancing crew will be dancing be\\ dance songs used during coronation of Acholi chief. The research therefore shows that the one of the common type of Bwola dance song is //labala// (songs for bragging and convincing). Other types of songs include //Larumu// (songs of lamentation/​mourning),​ //wer lyel// (funeral songs), //wer// //pak// for heroes (for rituals and celebrations),​ war dance (songs to confront enemies), and //laginya// (songs for courtship).\\ \\ Culturally according to some respondents,​ dancing Bwola has been an important part of the Acholi culture where entire communities incorporate dance as part of their rituals and celebrations. \\ sides them. This research results show various Bwola\\ ​
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 +\\ \\ These findings confirm what Simon Cephas Okello (2009), the Chairperson Acholi Youths Traditional Dancers Association says that they are often hired out to perform the Bwola dance during parties and marriage ceremonies. He noted that in the past dances like //Bwola// could only be performed for the chiefs during their coronation but that overtime it’s now performed for ordinary people as well.\\ \\ Three small traditional stools (//​tok-tok//​) are placed infront of the royal hut (//Ot Ker//). The chief is then allowed to sit on the middle one, holding his royal spear with Leopard’s Skin placed on his laps. The wife sits on the stool to the left of the Chief and one of the representatives (lawang rwot) sits on the stool on the right of the Chief.\\ \\ \\ 
 +\\ \\ \\ \\ //The king, his wife and representative sit on the stool infront of the royal hut//\\ \\ The //bowla// dance is performed to entertain the chiefs as he awaits other coronation procedures and ceremonies to be performed.\\ \\ The master of ceremony then picks the oil extracted from simsim (//Moo Lajimo//) and smear on the chest of the chief three times while standing. The same is repeated on his wife and one of his council of elder.\\ //Master of ceremony smears oil on the chest of the chief//\\ \\ {{::​smear.jpg?​nolink&​667}}\\ \\ \\ \\ As the //bwola// dance group continue to dance outside, the chief is then escorted inside the royal hut where he stays for three days in accompany with his wife and one of the council of elder (//Lawang// //rwot//) to make sure he does not violate the coronation ritual practices. The chief has to be escorted by the elder even if he goes out for call of nature (short and long calls).\\ \\ On the fourth day of the exercise, the chief, his wife and the council of elder are brought out and again entertained with the traditional Bwola dance. He then addresses the crowd (his subjects) swearing to uphold the tradition of the Acholi and serve with dignity as a traditional leader. The crowd cheers while women dance, jubilate and ululate with happiness. This finally marks the end of the coronation process.\\ \\ //The chief addresses his people to mark the end of the coronation process.//​\\ {{::​coronation.jpg?​nolink&​800}}\\ \\ \\ //Notes//\\ \\ \\ \\ \\ The results from this study revealed that Acholi do not coronate any person who is not married as a chief. The Acholi attach so much significance to the marriage institution (nyom) that failure to marry \\ \\ \\ is considered a curse (or an abnormality). Childlessness is counted as one of the most serious misfortunes to befall a couple, with women typically taking all the blame. In such cases, the marriage could be dissolved or the husband allowed taking another wife, because to the Acholi, children are the ultimate goal of any marriage. In fact according to legends, an Acholi couple could not set up a home until their first child was born.\\ It was also revealed that the Acholi Cultural Institution,​ the Ker Kwaro, has abandoned the idea of developing a single and centrally recognized constitution to govern coronation of chiefs in the region. The study shows that there have been unsuccessful attempts to harmonize cultural differences related to norms, beliefs and practices of reconciliation among the 55 clans that make up Ker Kwaro Acholi. Polly Phillip Okin Ojara, the newly Appointed Prime Minister of the Institution,​ says governing the 55 clans by a \\ single Constitution will tantamount to gross violations of the rights of the different clans.\\ \\ It was also found out that the Acholi Cultural Institution is currently running on the unwritten rule since government restored cultural leaderships. This lack of a single central constitution has been subject of debate among subjects for a very long time, with very little break through. Okin who has been serving the institution as a Volunteer since 2006 before he was elevated to the Prime Minister’s office, says the Council of Chiefs - the Supreme Policy making Organ of Ker Kwaro Acholi is stuck on which direction to take.\\ \\ The duty of Elders in conflict resolution has largely been replaced by the work of camp leaders and LCs. As Ladit Eromasio Odara commented, the “Elder institution has been replaced with camp leaders and LCs who are not always able to pass the best advice. Their neutrality in handling cases is normally compromised because of money, nepotism and politics”. Elders have also become isolated \\ \\ \\ from ‘their’ people, with whom they once had close proximity to in the village. Clans are often intermixed in camp settings, or in some cases, extended families are dispersed across different camps. “Elders are now scattered everywhere, they use to live with their people”. Displacement has also separated Elders from each other and poor security conditions prevent them from meeting regularly to discuss community issues. In short, Elders previously gained the ultimate respect of their communities because “they were seen as fathers by the younger generation. The way Elders conducted themselves was so extraordinary that many would refer to them as gods”. Elders were always approached for advice, however, the problems that have occurred in the camps are beyond the reach of the Elders, and thus render them unable to perform their duty.\\ **5.2 Recommendations**\\ The Acholi people should make a federal Constitutions or ‘guiding principles peculiar to the different clans’. This will \\ v protect and preserve cultural diversities within Ker Kwaro Acholi including coronation of the chiefs.\\ \\ v Unity can still be achieved among the different clans without a central constitution,​ under the wise counsel and guidance of Council of Elders who will work very closely with the Rwodi or Chiefs. \\ \\ v There should be effective mediation in land conflicts, reconciliation and restoration of broken relationships among conflicting parties.
coronation_of_chiefs.txt · Last modified: 2018/07/29 08:10 (external edit)