International Journal of English Literature and Culture

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International Journal of English Literature and Culture

Vol. 1(1), pp. 932, August, 2013

ISSN: 2360-7831

DOI: 10.14662/IJELC2013.018



Full Length Research


A collection of oral narratives from the Bamasaaba Community in eastern Uganda


Willy Wanyenya



E-mail: willywanyenya@yahoo.com


Accepted 30 August, 2013



In this study, the researcher collected samples of oral narratives of Bamasaaba and analyzed the different literary features. The collection has different oral narratives with different themes. There are oral narratives about work, famine, wars, love, hatred, hospitality, courage, wickedness etc.
The analysis of these oral narratives has shown that they have wonderful literary features. The analysis has shown that these oral narratives have literary features like the setting, plot, characters and styles and techniques.

Key words: Oral narratives, Bamasaaba, wars, love, work, famine.



In this article, the researcher explains who the BaMasaaba are, what they are and also gives samples of the stories collected from that Community. The researcher analyzes those oral narratives and gives the literary features which they reflect. All the stories have been written in a mother tongue called LuMasaaba and then translated in English.

Who are the BaMasaaba?

According to stories narrated by the local population, the word ’BaMasaaba’ is a name which means the descendants of Masaba. These people believe that Masaba was their ancestor, so they call themselves BaMasaaba meaning the descendants of Masaba. These people live on the slopes of Mt Elgon, one of the highest Mountains in Africa.

BaMasaaba and their economic activities.

According to a political map of Uganda prepared by the Country’s Ministry of Local Governments, Bududa District is found in the Eastern Region. It is also classified as one of the Areas in the Mt. Elgon Sub-region. Bududa District has got one big river called Manafa and several streams. The streams pour their waters into River Manafa at different points thus increasing its volume. Also, the presence of Mt Elgon with a thick forest cover has put Bududa district at an advantage of getting rainfall almost throughout the year. This has made the residents of Bududa to develop economically because of receiving rainfall almost every month.

According to the researcher who is himself a native of the place, the residents of Bududa are peasant farmers. Usually the rain starts during the month of March which makes it the month for planting seeds. The staple food for the people is bananas popularly known as Kamatore. Because of this, the highest percentage of the people in Bududa has got banana gardens. The people also use maize floor as a substitute and grow maize every year. Other crops grown by the people of Bududa include beans, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, cassava, fruits, tomatoes, onions, cabbage and different types of greens. These crops are grown for home consumption and also for sell to earn the money.

In the researcher’s view, the streams which are found in Bududa District have made the people to get involved in fishing, sand mining and collecting stones that are used in constructing houses. Some people fetch water from those streams and sell to bar and hotel owners to be used in washing stensils. The people who are involved in fishing usually catch the fish using the hook and bait, or by using a drug made out of leaves of a certain tree. When this drug is poured into the stream, it causes the fish to get ‘drunk’ and so be caught without difficulty. Some people, both the youth and the elderly climb Mt Elgon to harvest a particular plant called ‘Kamalea’ and sell to those people who cannot go there.

The plant grows wildly in the forest. It can be sold in its raw form or when it has been roasted on fire. Some other people, especially those who live near the forest are involved in hunting. They usually hunt animals like elephants, wild pigs, wild goats, and smaller animals like the squirrels.

According to the researcher, some of the people rear animals like cows, bulls, pigs, goats, sheep and rabbits. They also rear birds like chicken, turkeys, wild fowl and doves. The people of Bududa prefer rearing bulls to other types of animals because there are days when they compete in the games of bull fights. During the fights, the owner of the bull which emerges victorious feels proud of himself. Sometimes such people win prizes. When those bulls are sold they fetch a lot of money for the owners. Some people prepare local brew which they sell to others to earn a living. The local brew include ‘Pusaa’, ‘Inguli’ and ‘Indaali ye Kamatore.’ Pusaa is made from maize flour, Indali ye Kamatole is made from sweet bananas, while Inguli is made by mixing sugar and pusaa, keep it for a few days and then distil the contents.

These economic activities have greatly influenced storytelling among the BaMasaaba. This is because, many oral narratives among these people talk about these economic activities.

BaMasaaba and their religious beliefs.

According to the researcher who is himself a native of Bududa, the BaMasaaba of Bududa and those living in other parts of Mt. Elgon sub-region believe in life after death. They believe that the spirits of the dead continue to live and keep coming back to the homes of their relatives and can be disastrous if offended. So, as it is the case, when a newly born baby keeps on crying at night, the people believe that the child is being disturbed by the spirits of the dead. In such an event, the people organize a party to appease those spirits.

The BaMasaaba also believe that the people who die and leave their farms usually come back to inspect them. So, usually the parents warn their children not to go in the banana plantations during the hot hours of the day because they believe it is during such hours that the spirits of the dead are expected to roam around the world. Because of such a belief, it is not possible for the elderly people to eat all the food in the house fearing that if the dead come and miss food, they will cause problems.

According to the researcher, BaMasaaba also believe in gods called ‘Bawele matsakha.’ They strongly believe that those gods control their lives and if offended can become dangerous. When people’s daughters fail to bear children, the BaMasaaba usually say that it is because the gods have been angered. If a person is attacked by a strange disease, people say it has been brought by the gods.

These religious beliefs have also influenced storytelling among the BaMasaaba. Many of the narratives talk about these people and their traditional worship.

Key terms

In this study, the terms below have got the following meanings:
The word ‘oral’ means using the mouth.
The word ‘narration’ refers to the traditional storytelling.
The words ‘oral narratives’ refer to tales presented in a traditional way by mouth.

Research problem

The educated BaMasaaba in fields other than literature despise the oral narratives and take them to be useless and for the illiterate class. Such people do not know that these oral narratives form a very important genre of literature. This kind of thinking has led to a decline in storytelling and the oral narratives are slowly and steadily disappearing from that Community.

Purpose of the study

To find out the different literary features which are there in those BaMasaaba oral narratives.


(i) To make educated BaMasaaba appreciate their oral narratives.
(ii) To ensure that the oral narratives do not disappear from BaMasaaba Community.

Research questions

(i) What can make the educated BaMasaaba appreciate their oral narratives?
(ii) What can be done to ensure that the BaMasaaba oral narratives do not disappear from

Literature review

According to Wamitila (2008), a short story is a concept which explains a text in prose in which there is only one major event with only one or few characters. Wamitila says that short stories are a genre which does not have a long history in Kiswahili literature. In spite of this, he says that this branch of literature is growing very fast. He says that the growth of this genre of literature has been brought about by the growth of storytelling in different societies where peoples’ stories were published in daily news papers and later they were compiled into a collection of short stories in the nineteeth century.

In Wamitila’s view, short stories have been largely associated with legends in oral literature. In oral literature, legends are the ones which are closely related to the short stories. According to him, the growth of this genre has its roots in oral literature. Wamitila asserts that short stories have got three sections which are: the introduction, the body and the conclusion.While quoting Allan Edgar Poe, he re-affirms that the introduction of a short story needs to be that which affects the reader by taping his mind at the beginning. He continues to say that the introduction in a short story follows a certain formula and includes words like: ‘Once upon a time’ and ‘a long, long time ago’….

Lakareber (2004) studied the role of folk tales in shaping morals and behaviour of girls and young women among the Acoli and she says that traditionally, folktales were performed at night after the evening meal as the family waited for bedtime. This is because the meal was always eaten a bit early. According to her, most of the folktales among the Acoli centre on the female gender particularly the youth. She asserts that she made this observation while carrying out her research, for most of the folktales were actually promoting accepted values or behaviour or criticizing a vice among the female gender. She explains that according to one of her respondents, the society insists that a girl should behave as stipulated by the accepted norms and values of the society because she is to get married and join a completely different clan unlike the boys who remain in their own clans. She says that according to that respondent, it would therefore be shameful to the girl’s clan if she was found to be lacking certain values that are expected of a woman.

Lakareber says that due to the need to bring up morally upright girls, several methods are used to informally educate them. She says folktales are a major means of inculcating the accepted values and behaviour in them. In her view, when girls listen to a folktale being performed, they store the events in their mind and always apply the moral lessons whenever the situation arises. She says that this effect of the folktale can however be said to be unconscious. According to her, there are times when folktales are consciously used to shape behaviour and morals. Lakareber re-affirms that another respondent proved this assertion by saying that her grandmother actually taught her to be a hardworking girl through a folk tale of a lazy girl who lost her marriage because of laziness.

According to Lakareber, the Acoli folktales emphasized the following issues: cleanliness and adornment, discipline, modesty, communality, hardwork, honesty and creativity and intelligence. She says as far as cleanliness and adornment is concerned, an Acoli girl is expected to be clean and well adorned at all times. She says this is especially noticed at the dancing arena, for a dirty girl and one who is not well groomed got no dancing partner. Lakareber further explains that the Acoli folktales emphasized discipline so much because an indisciplined girl was a source of shame to her family.

Wako (2001) who studied the spiritual role of legends among the Baganda says that the spiritual role of legends are beyond human understanding. She explains that just as the Christians believe in the concept of the Holy Trinity; The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit but yet interpreted in one ‘God’ the creator of all things, the Baganda too believed in one ‘God’ the creator, Katonda, and the lesser gods - balubaale. She adds that the god has mediators known as Basamize through whom the people pray, worship and praise him accordingly. She says the Baganda consult Katonda on different matters.

In Wako’s persipective, among the Baganda, women who want to have children sacrifice to Lubaale Mukasa, the god of birth. At that time, special rituals are performed at the birth of Balongo (twins) popularly known as Obweeza obwa Mukasa, and are done in praise to Lubaale Mukasa for giving the parents twins; and if a woman gives birth after consulting Lubaale, the child is given the name of that Lubaale. If the child is a girl, it is offered to Lubaale as a wife. In case that child is a first born, it is offered to Lubaale as a living sacrifice. Wako says owing to the special role of the Balubaale in Buganda, the Baganda find it vital to name their children after them, especially if that particular Lubaale is consulted before the birth of that child.

According to Wako, some of the Balubaale like Walumbe and Kawumpuli, gods of illness and death, who killed people with incurable diseases, would not have children named after them. This Wako says that these gods were ruthless and cruel and therefore, out of fear people could not name their children after them and whenever a child fell sick, the parents consulted the Lubaale for healing and in particular they consulted Mukasa – omusawo. And when the child got well, it was given the name of that Lubaale with a belief that the child will live longer and have a healthy life.

Kembabazi (2000) has looked at the entertainment role of folktales among the Bakiga and says that in the Kiga culture, long ago, people would wake up early to go and cultivate their fields. She explains that they would have their lunch in the field and would retire back home at around 6.00p.m or even 7.00 pm, depending on the kind of work they had to accomplish.

She adds that because of the work which they did, the grandfather’s call for the storytelling session would be a welcome call. Kembabazi says around a warm fire, under the starry sky, the grandfather or grandmother would show their talents of storytelling. According to her, the tired workers would have time to unrewind and stretch their tired muscles. Kembabazi asserts that as the teller weaved his magic, the tired minds and bodies would relax and become attuned to the teller’s voice and that this would relieve people from tension.

Kembabazi says that folktales among the Bakiga were also meant to pass time. According to her, unlike these days, marriages of long ago took some time. The bride had to stay inside the father’s house for three whole months without going anywhere and the friends had to give her company but they would get bored. So, they would engage themselves in storytelling in turns. And everyday, they had to tell a different story in order to kill monotony.

In Kembabazi’s view, folktales were also told to children in order to keep them awake, especially when their mothers’ had delayed to prepare supper because of too much work during the day. Kembabazi explains that the tale of the frog and the snake would keep them awake as they kept imagining how the frog could have thought that a mere ‘wash’ would take off all its scales or clean its rough body.

Kimani and Chimerah (1999) say that oral literature is important in socialization. According to them, anything which is done on earth is associated with oral literature. They say because oral literature originates from peoples’ behavior and how they respond to their environment, this genre has been in existence throughout human life and has given explanations in different fields like in history, science, language, knowledge, geography, philosophy, education and written literature.

The two authors say that oral literature also explains how man struggles with the problems and tries to live. So, according to them, storytelling has shown how people in the different regions of the world have avoided catastrophes by improvising means of getting food, homes and education. They say that the excellent means which were improvised by man in order to meet the challenges of his environment made him to live on to-date.

The two further explain how to teach stories in class. In their view, legends are stories which give several examples of man’s life and the problems which he faces in the world. They say that the major objective of many stories is to show how man overcomes the problems which he faces and he gets himself in a better position. Kimani and Chimera assert that many stories emphasize that foolish or lazy people who do not want to use the wisdom which they have to solve their problems usually face death.

According to them, characters in a story are usually people or animals or people and animals or people and Ghosts or people and trees. The characters can also be people and nonliving things like stones. The two companions re-affirm that in the stories, it is the people who learn and change their behavior and live well and once they ignore the messages carried by the stories, they face death.

Mushengyezi (1999) has researched on the influence of folk myths and legends on the cultural ideology in Ankole and says that the classification of folk narratives as myth or legend is in some cases a little problematic especially where some legends seem to have receded into myths. In his view, people have therefore relied on the definition offered by oral literature scholars as our guide. Mushengyezi asserts that since the myths and legends have had a more or less similar impact on the ideology of the Banyankole, there is need to carry out a detailed analysis of both orature forms concurrently.

He explains that legends and myths in orature belong to the broader category of prose narratives which include folktales, fables and fairy tales. He argues that many scholars tend to use the terms ‘legend’ and ‘myth’ interchangeably, for the two oral narrative forms are mutually exclusive in their generic denotation. He adds that over time, legends easily turn into myths or ‘mythic legends,’ while some legends are usually accepted as oral history.

Mushengyezi refers to Bukenya’s explanation of how myths and legends develop. According to that explanation, the story starts from a specific historical happening, then as we draw away from it, it becomes legendary. Even though the facts continue being narrated, a lot of decoration and exaggeration is applied. Then as we go further, it becomes mythical; it begins to be weird and it is given all sorts of supernatural dimensions.

Mushengyezi says, however, myths and legends differ in many aspects. He says legends can be defined as accounts of historical personalities and events that are so memorable in a society that they deserve to be constantly reminisced over. He goes ahead to say that their major purpose is to ennoble the heroes and the heroines that have shaped a society’s history, and with whom a people have a strong psychological attachment.

Research design

Research design describes the nature of pattern the research intends to follow. It describes the plan or strategy for conducting the research. In this study, the researcher used field research design and a case study design. He used the field research design because this would bring him in contact with the old people who have a lot of information about storytelling and would therefore give words of wisdom which are required in the study. He also used a case study design for convenience because covering the whole District would be expensive.

By using the field research design, the researcher went into the field and collected data concerning storytelling among the BaMasaaba. And by using a case study design, the researcher did not study all the oral narratives of BaMasaaba, but just took a sample. The collected data then gave a reflection of storytelling among BaMasaaba. While in the field, the researcher sampled the respondents whom he interviewed. The respondents included: middle aged men and women, the elders, and artists.

Population and sampling

Target population

According to Yuko and Onen (2005), a target population refers to the total number of subjects of interest to the researcher. According to Enon (1998), target population are the people whom the researcher expects to meet and they give him the information concerning his topic of study. So, in this case, the subjects of interest to the researcher were members of the general public. In selecting these subjects, the researcher considered the age and gender issues.

The respondents were those people between the ages of 18-70. The researcher involved people of 18 years and above as his respondents, because these could respond to questions with ease. The researcher involved elderly people in his study because they have witnessed different events like tribal wars, famine, traditional marriages and ritual ceremonies as they occurred in society.

Sample size

Sample size refers to the total number of subjects involved in the study (Enon 1999). The researcher, therefore, had a population of 120 subjects. These were drawn from the four parishes which are found in Bukigai sub-county. The researcher selected 30 subjects from each parish, because according to the data at the Sub-county, almost all the four parishes had an equal number of the population.

Sampling techniques

With population sampling, the researcher used the random sampling technique. Before carrying out the sampling process, he identified particular groups of people required in the study. The respondents were then selected randomly according to those groups. The researcher did not meet all his respondents in one place. He usually visited them in their homes and on other occasions, he met some in public places. During the sampling process, the researcher ensured that the respondents were properly represented taking into account the age and gender issues. Because of that, the respondents included the youth, middle aged men and women, and elderly people.

Research tools


By using verbal interviews, the researcher met the respondents face to face and asked them questions. The researcher used guiding questions to ask questions during the interview with his respondents. This enabled him to ask the questions systematically. The list of questions was not exposed to the respondents because they would probably become nervous and fail to express themselves. The researcher used this method so that he could get some explanations which the questionnaires could not give as the respondents simply say agree or disagree.


By using observation method, the researcher attended some storytelling sessions and observed how the event is carried out. This enabled him to take note of some key issues like the starting words which are: a long time ago or once upon a time before they proceed with the narration.

Validity and reliability of the instruments of data

The validity and reliability of the instruments of data collection was taken care of by carefully developing the questionnaires and interview questions to ensure that they measure what they are supposed to measure. Secondly, each research tool was pre-tested on a selected population to confirm whether it would give the required results.

Data collection

Data collection took place in the field. It involved collecting oral narratives from the local people. While in field, the researcher conducted interviews with his respondents. The interviews enabled the researcher to get original information from the respondents. The researcher also learnt more from the expressions made by the respondents as they answered the questions. The respondents were asked two types of questions, both structured and unstructured.

With the structured questions, precise and factual responses were given by the respondents. The researcher used structured questions because the respondents would find them easy to answer. He also used the unstructured questions because they would enable the respondents to give their personal views according to the way they feel. With the unstructured questions, different views concerning the same question were given by different respondents. All the responses given by the respondents were recorded in the researcher’s note book. The oral narratives on the other hand were tape recorded using a radio cassette.

Validity and reliability of the collected data

The following measures were taken to ensure that the collected data was valid and reliable:
• The researcher ensured that all the parts in the area where the research was carried out were represented.
• The researcher selected the respondents from the different age groups so as to get different views.
• The researcher also involved in his study the people of different sexes.

Presentation and analysis

With the data analysis, the researcher began by modeling the collected data. Data modeling is very important in research because it is critical for a researcher to have a grasp of the fundamentals of data which has been collected. The researcher began the process of data modeling by integrating data obtained by the two instruments of data collection which were used in the study.

He then grouped the different types of data basing on the research questions. After grouping the different types of data, the researcher then sorted out the unwanted information. He identified relationships of the data, carried out normalization to reduce data redundancy, and also denormalized to improve performance.

The researcher then developed a simple physical data model of tables which he used to analyze the data. The researcher also used bar graphs during the process of data analysis. The researcher used both tabular and bar graph forms on the assumption that some readers find it easy to interprete information which is presented using tables whereas others find it easy to interprete information which is presented using bar graphs. The researcher therefore used both methods so as to meet the needs of both categories of the readers.

Samples of the oral narratives


Yabawo khalakho Wanakhamuna ni kusilu.
Wanakhamuna aba nga ali ni kamakyesi kamankyi khutuma Kusilu. Ela bisela bikali, Wanakhamuna aba nga aomela Kusilu na mula mubiangafu.

Lunakhu lutwela, wanakhamuna wenyukha ni Kusilu khutsya lukyendo lwe akhunu aleyi. Lwekhuba lukyendo olwo lwa luleyi, Wanakhamuna ni Kusilu bombi bapanga khusuta bilyo bye khulila khuntsila. Wanakhamuna wabuwa bibyewe naye Kusilu alyo naye wabuwa bibyewe.

Balekyikha lukyendo lwawe batsya bola khulutsi lutwela. Oli niyo Kusilu ashilolelela eyi, Wanakhamuna wabisa bilyo byewe amala waamba libale watsukutsa mulutsi. Walomela Kusilu ali ise namwatile bilyo mulutsi nawe mwata. Kusilu wabukula bilyo byewe wamwata mulutsi.

Lwanyuma lwekhuumulamo, belosela ni lukyendo lwawe batsya. Oli bola mushifo shishindi intsala yabalya. Batsya, batsya oli bola khulutsi lulundi, Wanakhamuna wekha mumetsi wasaba. Kusilu khubona alyo, naye wekha mumetsi naye wasaba. Lwanyuma Wanakhamuna wamuleba ali usaba ukana khulya shi? Kusilu naye waleba Wanakhamuna ali newe nawe usaba ukana khulya shi?

Wanakhamuna wamulomo ali ingana khulya bilyo byese. Awene ni awene ewo, Wanakhamuna wela mukungutsi yewe, wabukula bilyo byewe walekyikha khulya. Kusilu uli amusaba wamuma, wamulomela ali iwe umwatile bilyo byowo mulutsi. Kusilu wamulomela ali ng’ana iwe umomele ubele wabikhile bilyo byowo. Kusilu wakyenda intsala khukhwolisa nabatabula isi abe bali khutsya.



A long time ago, the Hare and the Hyena lived together as friends. The Hare was more crafty than the Hyena. On several occasions the Hare tricked the Hyena and put him in problems.
One day, they planned to go on a journey. And because the journey was long, they needed to carry the food. The Hare and the Hyena each had his own food. They began the journey very early in the morning. They travelled untill they came to a river. As the Hyena was looking the other side, the Hare hurriedly hid his food and picked a stone. He then threw that stone in the river and decieved the Hyena that he had thrown his food into the river. He told the Hyena to do the same. The Hyena foolishly got his food and threw it into the river.

They continued with their journey untill they felt hungry. So, when they came to the next river, the Hare went in and washed his hands. When the Hyena saw the Hare wash his hands, he also went in and washed his. Then the Hare asked him, ‘you are washing hands, what do you want to eat?’ Then the Hyena also asked the Hare, ‘you have also washed the hands, what do you want to eat?’ Then the Hare replied ‘I want to eat my food.’ Then he got his food and began to eat. When the Hyena asked him for something to eat, the Hare refused, saying ‘you threw your food into the river.’

The Hyena said ‘so you hid your food and decieved me that you had thrown it into the river? The Hyena had to go hungry untill they reached where they were going.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – ’A long time ago’ in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the event he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot. Looking at the story, it becomes clear that the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist narrates how the Hyena and the hare lived together. The Hare was clever compared to the Hyena. He explains how they went on a journey and then the Hare tricked the Hyena to throw away the food. In this story, the artist uses the narrative and flashback techniques to present his message. The story itself has only two characters. The characters are the Hyena and the Hare. In this story there is a conflict. The conflict is between the Hyena and the Hare. This story teaches us that in society, there are foolish and clever people. The clever ones usually put the foolish ones in trouble.

Umukhasi ni khawondo

Yabawo khalekho khulukyinkyi Masaba, umukhasi mutwela lisina lyewe bali Nambotso. Umukhasi uyo aba ni babaana bewe likhumi na babili. Imbuka nga yolile intsala yakwawo. Babanu bankyi balekyikha khuela lwe khutamba bilyo. Lanyuma bawulila baali imubimbi bilyo biliyo mubunkyi. Ni nashilyo buli umunu uwakana khuona intsala eyo, enyukha watsya imubimbi khuentsa bilyo. Nambotso naye nga babanti baaba na bali khukhola, enyukha, watsya imubimbi khulola bilyo.

Ne Nambotso aba nga wabyaala ango ewe luwondo lwesi bakhalya taa, lwekhuba abe lura. Nambotso nga ashili khukhunyukha khutsya imubimbi ta, wakambila babaana bewe ali “ intsala yang’abalya mukhakhakokho mwatekha kamaondo ako taa.’ Ne lwanyuma lwewe khumala tsinakhu nga akobolama taa, intsala yalya babaana ela bakhalawo khubuta kamaondo kesi mayi wawe abalomelali bakhalya, bakatekha bakalya. Ne lwanyuma lwekhulya kamaondo ako, babaana abo boosi likhumi na baabili bafa. Ne abe Nambotso wabaya liusi ango ewe. Liusi ilyo nga lyaboone babaana ba Nambotso bafile, lyapambulukha lyatsya imubimbi khumulanga. Liusu lyatsya nga lyemba kumwenya kuno:

Khentsya entsya mumbo, khetsya entsya mumbo, kheentsye. Intsya khulanga Nambotso kheentsye, khwondo esi walekha khentsye khamala babaana boosi, likhumi na babili boosi.
Liusi ilyo nga lyolile imubimbi ela lyabolele Nambotso, enyukhilamo wakobola ingo. Inga wolile, watuya nga babaana boosi likhumi na babili bafile. Sheesi akhola atsya inyuma wentsu yewe, wabuta lufufu, wabakakho babana abo boosi balamukha.



A long time ago, there lived a woman whose name was Nambotso. The woman had twelve children. After sometime, the land where the woman lived experienced severe famine. People began to die because of lack of food. They then heard that there was plenty of food in the plains, very far away from where the woman lived. And whoever wanted to live had to go there for food. Just like others were doing, Nambotso decided to go to the plains for food.

But before her departure, she instructed her children not to cook and eat the pumpkins which she had planted in her compound because they were poisonous. But when Nambotso took long to return, the children decided to cook the pumpkins and eat. And after eating them, all the twelve children died. Nambotso had reared a dove in her home. And when the dove saw that the children had died, it flew to the plains to inform Nambotso. The dove went while singing the song below:

I am going to the plains, I am going to the plains
I am going to call Nambotso, let me go
The pumpkin she left at home, has killed all her twelve children.

The dove went while singing this song untill it reached Nambotso. It reported the matter to her and she hurried back home. When she reached there, she truly found her twelve children dead. As soon as she confirmed it, she immediately went to the back of her house and plucked the branch of a certain plant (Lufufu) which she used to beat the dead bodies slightely and then the children came back to life.


The above oral narrative shows that there is a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – ’A long time ago’ in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot. It is clear that the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how the land was struck by famine leading to death and people started travelling long distances in search for food. There happened to be a woman with her twelve children.

When the situation became worse, she also travelled away to look for food. But while she was away the children cooked poisonous pumbkins and ate. All the twelve children died. The dove then followed the woman in the wilderness and told her. The woman went back and applied some jams on the bodies and her children resurrected.

The story has fourteen characters - the woman, twelve children and the dove. The artist presents the story by using narrative and flashback techniques. In this narrative, the conflict is between man and nature.

Lusukhu lwe linani

Yabawo khalaakho, intsala yakwao mushibala yaesa babanu bakali nabi. Yalamawo umusani mutwela onyene numukhasi wewe ni babana bawe musanvu. Mushifo mwesi umusani uyo amenya abe linani lilimo ni lusikhu lwakwo lwe kamatoole. Linani ilyo abe lyalima lusikhu ulwo mubulayi nabi ela nga kamatoole kaangala mubunkyi, kaloba bulobi binyunyi na bilya. Umusani uwabanga walamawo uyo wabanga atsya nu mukhasi ni babana na beba kamatoole ke linani. Inga abe bolile mulusikhu banyowa balya kamarofu bekula nio bakyeka kesi batsya khutekhela ingo. Buli esi linani litsila mukunda, lituya nga bebile kamatoole kalyo. Linani lyelebatsaka lili babanu bosi bafa ne nanu uubatsaka kamatoole kalyo.

Lunakhu lutwela umusani uyo ni bemungo mwewe batsya khukhuba kamatoole ke linani inga bushele. Inga bolile mulusikhu, balekyikha khulya kamarofu. Oli bamala khulya, bakyeka ke khutsya nako ingo ela baamba intsila batsya. Sheng’abi imbi, inga bakwile khuntsila khutsyengo, babana bawe batsya nga balya kamarofu balakasa tsinandu khuntsila.

Linani lyaloma lili litsya mulusikhu, lya tuya kamatoole kebishile. Ne lyaloma lili limenielesa, Lyabona kumwanda kwesi batsilakho. Linani lyalondelelela kumwanda okwo oli lyola atayi, lyabona balakasile tsimandu tse kamarofu. Linani lyalekyikha khulondelela tsimandu itso khukhwolisa lyatabula ango omusani uyo. Inga lyatabule, lyabatuya ni kamatoole kesi babanga bebile mulusikhu lwakwo.

Linani lybabukula bosi lyatsya nabo. Inga lyabolisile ingo, lyabalomela lili ali iwe umusani buli lunakhu khukhatsyatsake fombi imubimbi khuentsa bilyo. Lyalomela umukhasi lili newe ukhalamatsake ano khufuka busima. Lyelosela lili ne lwanyuma lwe khufuka busima, buli lunakhu ula umwana mutwela undekhele imulye. Ela intsakamo nga babana bawele, lwanyuma lwe khufuka busima, omwene nawe ukhetekhe inga netsile ing’ulye.

Buli lunakhu linani lyaba inga litsya nu umusani imubimbi khuentsa bilyo. Umukhasi waba nga ang’onang’ona ango buli lunakhu ni khufuka busima. Khumbuka iyo, ango elinani yabawo kubale kubofu nabi. Umukhasi wasaba kubale okwo ali nuufukyilise ukulikhewo imbisatsake babana base munda mwowo. Kubale okwo kwafukyilisa. Buli lunakhu, umukhasi uli wafuka busima, wasuta umwana mutwela wamubisa mubale amala waentsa kamakumba wateshela linani. Oli lilota angolobe, umukhasi walia busima ni kamakumba kesi ateshile. Linani oli lilya lyenukuna lyaloma lili abe umwana wene wanula.

Umukhasi wakholatsaka alyo khukhwolisa babana musanvu nabawela mubale. Lunakhu lwo mukhasi umwene khukhutekha nga lwolile, ndi wafuka busima amala waentsa kamakumba watekhekhela linani, umwene walonda khubana mulibale. Linani lyaloma oli lilota, lyatuya awo busima ni kamakumba lyalya, inga libasa lili umukhasi umwene naye weteshile.

Oli lunakhu lulwelakho, lwekhuba imawo umunu we khutekha bilyo, linani lyalomela umusani lili shalelo unalama ango utekhe bilyo. Lyelosela lyamulomela lili ne kane nga wafukyile busima, omwene nawe kane utekhe amala enindota ing’ulye. Lwanyuma lwe khuwa bilakyilo ebyo, linani lyalula lyatsya.

Sawa tse kumusi nga tsolile, umusani wafuka busima. Inga wamalile khufuka, wala khumayika kametsi muduramu komwene khukhutekhelamo. Kametsi iko oli kakyemukha, umusani weng’onang’ona khutsya khukwomo. Weshenda imukongo amala wetsa butima noli atsye akwomo kamulisa. Wakhaka kyimilundi minkyi nenga kamulisa.

Lwanyuma libale lyekukhawo, umukhasi ni babana bewe bamulomela bali yitsa khubise ife khuli muno. Umusani wabelomo ali ng’ana mwaombisa busa linani mwetekhama ta. Lekha linani lilote inalibolela. Inga umusani walomile alyo, libale lyeyikala.

Umusani walama akhaka ali manya atsye akwe mumetsi ne kamulisa. Intsakamo linani lyalota lyamutuya nga ashitekhama ta. Lyamuleba lili lwoshina ukhetekhile. Umusani bali ashiloma ali umukhasi ni babana ng’ana betekhama ta bayibisa mubale, linani lyamufakhila kumulundi mutwela lya mumwata muduramu ye kametsi khumayika washila omwo.



A long time ago, there was severe famine in one Area which killed many people. There was only one man who survived with his family. The man had a wife and seven children. In that Area, there was an Ogre who had a very good farm of bananas. The bananas would get ripe and the birds just eat. So, the man who had survived up to that time would take his wife and children to go and steal bananas from the Ogre’s farm. Whenever they reached there, they would first of all eat the ripe bananas before cutting down what they needed for home consumption. The Ogre always wondered who was stealing his bananas.

One day, the man and his family went to steal the bananas from the farm. As usual, they first ate the ripe ones and then cut down what they needed for home consumption. Unfortunately, as they left the farm, the children went while eating the ripe bananas and droping the inner linings on the way. When the Ogre went to the farm, he found out that his bananas had been stolen. But when he moved around, he saw the foot steps of the thieves. When he followed the foot steps for a while, he saw the linings of the sweet bananas droped all along. The Ogre then followed those linings untill he reached the man’s home. When he reached there, he found a pile up of bananas which they had stolen from his farm.

The Ogre took all of them to his home. When they reached there, he gave them instructions. He said the man would always accompany him to go to the plains to look for food. The woman was instructed to cook food and everyday she was to kill one child and prepare the sauce. There was a very big stone in the Ogre’s compound. So, the woman asked the stone to open up so that she would hide her children in there. The stone accepted. So everyday, the woman would prepare food, collect some bones to prepare sauce and then she would hide a child in the stone. She kept on doing like that untill all the seven children were hiden in the stone. Eventually,it was the day for her to cook herself. Just like she had been doing all along with her children, she prepared the food. After doing that, she collected some bones and prepared sauce for the Ogre and she joined her children in the stone.

When the Ogre came back in the evening, he did not find the woman and he was convinced that the woman had prepared herself into sauce. So, the Ogre told the man that the next day he was to remain at home and prepare food and that he would prepare himself for sauce. In the morning the Ogre left.

When it was time for lunch, the man prepared the food as he had been instructed. Afterwards, he boiled water in a drum ready to cook himself for sauce. He moved a little behind and then came running but when he reached the drum, he feared to jump into the boiling water. He tried several times but he could not manage. Eventually the stone opened up and the wife called him saying ‘come and we hide in here, for us we are here.’

But instead the man said, so you decieved the Ogre and you are hiding there? Let him come back, I am going to tell him. Then the stone closed up. The man kept trying to jump into the boiling water but he could not manage. Eventually, the Ogre returned and found the man there. The Ogre asked him why he had not cooked himself just like his wife did. As the man was trying to narrate how the wife and children were hiding in the stone, the angry Ogre graped him and dumped him in the drum of boiling water. Within a very short time, the man was ready for eating.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – ’A long time ago’ in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago. The oral narrative has also got a plot. The events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how the land was struck by famine leading to the death of people, leaving only one family.

That family survives by stealing bananas of the Ogre. The Ogre finally arrests them and takes them home. The Ogre instructs the woman to be killing a child each day for a meal as the husband accompanies it to go to the wilderness. Instead of killing the children as she had been instructed, the woman keeps preparing the bones and then hides her children in a big stone nearby. When her turn came, she did the same and hid herself. When the turn for the man to prepare himself for a meal came, the woman tries to save him by telling him the trick she had used. The man turns a deaf ear and when the Ogre came back and found him alife, it quickly carried the man and put him in a drum of boiling water.

This story has some characters. The characters are: the parents and their children, and the Ogre.

The narrator uses narrative and flasback techniques to present his message.
The story also has the conflict. The conflict is between members of a man and nature.
This story teaches us that we should be people who listen and take other people’s advice.

Umwana uwela papa wewe

Yabawo khalekho, Mushikuka she Bumukoya, Mumulukha kwe Bumatanda Mugombolola ye Bukigai, basani babili balondane. Basani abo baba Wanyela ni Bung’ono. Basani abo, buli mutwela aba ni babana bewe. Bung’ono aba ni babana babili – Makosia ni Watsyeli. Imbuka inga yolile, Bung’ono wafa. Ne Bung’ono inga ashili khufa ta, walakyila wandaye Wanyela khulolelela liloba lyewe khukhwolisa babana bewe inga batsoile alibawe.

Shisela shola umwana wa Wanyela umukhulu bali Mayeku watsya inga abolelama papa wewe ta, wabyala tsisimo tse kamatoole mumukunda kwesi wandaye Bung’ono aba nga amulekhela khulinda. Inga papa wewe washifumbule, wakhalala nabi ela wamulomisa. Lwanyuma lwekhumulomisa, papa wewe watsya wakhulaka tsisimo tsesi aba nga wabyalile.

Mayeku walulawo watsya ibusali womayi wewe. Inga wabolele bakhotsa bewe, Bamulekyela liloko lye khutsya ele papa wewe. Bamulomela akoboleyo ingo atsye abuse tsisimo tse kamatoole tsesi papa wewe aba nga wakhulakyile atsiseyo atsibyale bushakha nga bisina bilola mungakyi. Mayeku weleyo watsya wakhola nga Bakhotsa bewe nabamubolela. Lwanyuma oli shisela shabila shifiti shili, bulwale bakwa khu papa wewe ela bwamula. Babanu bosi khushalo baloma bali Mayeku welile papa wewe.

Imbuka yola Mayeku wasala umwana wewe wamulanga ali Malesi. Umwana oyo watsowa wola khuyila umukhasi. Watuya umukhana mutwela bali Etseleya khukhwama mumulukha kwe Bunamubi. Ne Mayeku watakhukana umwana wewe ayile umukhana oyo ta. Isho shakyila bakhalasana bola khulomana.

Khushisela isho, umusololi mutwela bamulanga bali Masiina wetsa khukhwama Ikenya isi abe amenya. Lwekhuba abonekha ali ni kamani lwekhulya bulayi, Malesi watsya wamusaba amulile papa wewe Mayeku amala amuwe kamapesi. Ne Masiina wenyola ali niye imawo shikyila wela Mayeku lwekhuba bakhulomanakho ninaye ta. Ninashilyo Masiina wekana, wamulomela aentse umunu ukundi amuyete. Khukhwamilawo, Malesi wabiila Masiina khukhwolisa khufa khwewe.

Inga umusali, Mayeku wola akhunu waola lilima lyewe, walekyikha khukholakana ni umwana wewe inga amanyama ali umwana ashimukhalalila ta. Lunakhu lutwela musawa tse kumutikhinyi, Mayeku watsya ingo omwana wewe uyo khubashesakho. Ne inga wolileyo, bamuwa chai nga balelomo butwa. Mayeku wanywa chai uyo ela yaloma oli ibilawo sawa inkyekhe tsili, Mayeku.



A long time ago, there lived two brothers in Bumukoya village in Bumatanda parish in Bukigai sub-county. The two brothers were Wanyela and Bung’ono. Each of them had children. Bung’ono had two sons. The two sons were Makosia and Watsyeli. After sometime, Bung’ono fell sick and died. But before he died, he told his brother Wanyela to be in charge of his land untill his children would grow up and then distribute it among them.

Later, Wanyela’s eldest son called Mayeku went without asking for permission from his father and planted banana stems in the late Bung’ono’s land. That meant that he had taken over the ownership of that land. When Wanyela his father learnt about it, he became very furious and rebuked him seriously. He then up rooted all the banana stems which his son had planted.
Mayeku went to his maternal uncles and made consultations with them. His uncles gave him instructions of witchcraft. They told him to go back home, collect all the uprooted banana stems and replant them upside down. Mayeku returned home and did as he had been instructed. He collected all the banana stems and replanted them upside down as he had been instructed by his uncles.

Shortly after, his father fell sick and died. It was widely rumoured that he had been killed by his son. Mayeku then took over the responsbility of his father’s estate. After sometime, he got married and his wife gave birth to a baby boy. He named his son - Malesi. His son grew up and also reached the age of marrying a wife. He identified a girl called Etseleya from Bunaporo village in Bunamubi Parish. But his father did not want him to marry that girl. That resulted into a bitter quarell, leading to great enemity between them. Malesi went ahead and married Etseleya despite his father’s objection.

At that time, another young man called Masiina who had been living in Kenya returned home. Because he looked strong due to good feeding, Malesi went and asked him to kill Mayeku, his own father. However, because Masiina had not had any personal grudge with Mayeku, he refused and instead advised Malesi to look for another person. From that time onwards, Malesi hated Masiina up to his death.

After sometime, Mayeku calmed down and began to associate with his son. He did so without knowing that his son was still nursing the anger. One morning, he went to his son’s home to say hello to them. Unfortunately, when he reached there, he was given poisoned tea and he died a few hours later.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – ’A long time ago’ in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot. This is because the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how one man had a son. The son grew up and married a lady whom the father did not want. The father quarrelled with his son and enemity developed. One morning when the man went to check on them, they gave him poisoned tea and he died instantly.

This story has three characters. The characters are:

Malesi, his wife and Mayeku the father of Malesi.
The narrator uses both narrative and flashback techniques to present his message.
The story also shows that there is a conflict. The conflict is between Mayeku and his son Malesi.
This story teaches us that we should be careful with our own children. The narrator applies both the narrative and flash back techniques to present his story.

Busiiku bwe liloba

Yabawo khalekho umusani mutwela mushikuka she Bumukoya, mumulukha kwe Bumatanda mugombolola ye Bukigai. Umusani uyo bamulangatsaka bali shibiita. Shibiita uyo aba nga ali ni liloba ni bibyayo mubunkyi. Shibiita aba ni bandaye batalu besi alondana nabo. Bandaye abo baba Naluwa, Khawanga ni Wantsusi. Mubatalu abo, Naluwa aba nga ashili umwana ela nga ali muntsu mwa Shibiita. Ne balamile babili nga batsowa ne balime nililoba ni bibyayo mubunkyi ta. Ni lwesho, babonela wandayawe Shibiita libuba ela baentsa khumula.

Lunakhu lutwela kumutikhinyi, Khawanga ni Wantsusi babukula kamafumo kawe ni tsingabo batsya ingo wa Shibiita nga bakhalilewo khutsya khumula. Inga batabule batuya Shibiita nga wekhale ashilala shewe alikholela kumumu. Bamulomela bali lunakhu ulwo alime uwekhuona ta. Ne ng’ana Shibiita naye abe olela kumumu nga wasobeshile lifumo lyewe limi lili Mshilala mungakyi. Lifumo lyewe abe lili ni kumwini mumi kuli, lifanana ni lyesi Shaka alwanatsakila. Inga awulila bandaye bamubolela balyo, Shibiita wenyukha mangu wasoleyo lifumo lyewe.

Shibiita walekyikha khulwana ni bandaye babili abo. Walanga wandaye umukyekhe Naluwa etse amuyete busolo. Naluwa uwaba ali muntsu walula. Ne aloma ali abona kamafumo kakhonyana, watima wepa muntsu webisa. Lwanyuma umukhasi wa Shibiita walula antsye wapa tsindululu, balilwana betsa nio baonisa Shibiita. Khukhwamila awo, shibiita watsuba bandaye abo basalanila balula ango ela intsakamo baela nga imawo usala umwana ta.



A long time ago, there lived a man called Shibiita in Bumukoya village in Bumatanda Parish in Bukigai sub – county. The man had three brothers. The three brothers were: Naluwa, Khawanga and Wantsusi. Naluwa was the youngest and still under the care of Shibiita his elder brother. Shibiita had more land and cattle than his other two brothers – Khawanga and Wantsusi. This attracted envy from those two brothers and they planned to kill Shibiita.

One morning, they picked their spears and shields and went for him. They found Shibiita seated by his grannery, enjoying sunshine of the morning hours. The two brothers then declared war against him. When Shibiita saw that his life was in danger, he quickly got up and drew his spear which he had pushed under the top cover of the grannery. The spear was as short as the asakai of Shaka of the Zulu.

He then began defending himself and at the sametime calling his young brother Naluwa for help. But when Naluwa who was inside the house came out and saw the sharp spear heads knock each other as the two brothers struggled to spear Shibiita to death, he ran into the house and hid himself. Then Shibiita’s wife came out and raised an alarm. The alarm attracted the neighbours who came and rescued Shibiita from his brothers. Thereafter, Shibiita cursed his two brothers and they both left their homes and went to live in distant places from where they later died without bearing children.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – ’A long time ago’ in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot. This is because the events being narrated in the story flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how one man had brothers. Because he had large pieces of land, his brothers planned to kill him. However, he was able to defend himself untill the neighbours went and helped him.

The man cursed his brothers and they all vanished from home, and died from an unknown place.

In this narrative, the narrator uses narrative and flashback techniques.

The story has some characters. The characters are: Shibiita, his wife, brothers and the neighbours who rescued him.

The story also shows that there is a conflict. The conflict is between Shibiita and his brothers.

Weasa umulosi

Yabawo khalakho umusani mutwela bamulanga bali Weasa. Umusani uyo abe umulosi nabi. Abe khushalo khwesi amenya, imawo umunu uunyaa ninaye ta. Abe buli umunu osi umukhalasa, oyo aloka busa wela. Singa abe umukholokho shishinu shosi, ne wakhukhabila ali kane omwene obunele khu kwo, umanya busa oli atsya khukhuloka ufe. Babanu baloma bali abe inga Weasa wakhulokyile ulwalila kyimyakha mikali nio wafa. Bali abe umunu isi Weasa alokyile amenya muntsu kyimyakha kyiminkyi inga alwala – iyatso. Babanu khushalo isho beleba bakhole shina Weasa. Umusani mutwela wabalomela ali mukhaluwa ta lwekhuba lunakhu lwewe luli shimi khukhwola. Babanu besi aba nabo batakhumanya shina shesi amanyisa ta.

Lunakhu lutwela, umusani uyo wayilisa Weasa tsisawa tsosi. Buli shesi Weasa akhola khulunakhu ulwo, umusani uyo aba washibone. Imbuka inga yolile, Weasa watsya mushitsakha khukhuyeta. Ne umusani ukundi uyo waba nga wamulolele. Oli Weasa walula mushitsakha wela ingo, umusani ukundu uyo wela mushitsakha wabukula kamafi ka Weasa watsya nako.

Imbuka eyo yaba iyelikyesa ela abe Weasa wakyesile bulo bwewe wemisile indumi khulwanyi. Oli mushilo, umusani ukundu uyo watsya ni kamafi ka Weasa kesi aba wabukule mushitsakha, wakasobekha mubulo bwo Weasa khulwanyi. Kumutikhinyi Weasa oli atsya khukhwanikhila bulo bwewe, watuyomo kamafi. Weasa watakhumanya kamafi katsilemo kalyene ta. Weasa wasuta kamafi ako wakyenda nako shishalo shibufu inga akana umunu uwashikholile ebole amala amuyashile. Ne imawo umunu osi uwelusayo waloma ali niye uwashikholile ta.

Weasa waloma ali bushele balila bali imbaloka ne shalelo oyu umwene welelile. Wasuta kamafi watsya wakaloka. Imbuka oli yola, Weasa umwene walakyikha khulwala. Walekyikha khunialila mubulili nga abe babanu besi aloka nabaniala. Webasa ali umunu kundi wamuloka, watakhumanya ali umwene wayiloka ta. Oli wabona aminyikha, waloma ali khanile umunu isi naloka oyu nio nase ife. Oli wakhola bibinu byewe ali manya ela umunu kundi isi aloka, umwene weyila. Khukhwamila awo shishalo esho shatelela, babanu bamenya mulukosi nga imawo khurya ta.



Along time ago, there lived in Bududa a man called Weasa. The man was a natorious witch and no body played with him in that Area. Whoever annoyed him, he would just bewitch and kill. People feared him so much. If a person did anything to him and then he told that person that he would see it by himself, that person knew that he was going to die. People say that whenever Weasa bewitched somebody, that person would suffer for several years before dying. People in that Area asked themselves what they could do to Weasa but they had no answer because all of them were scared of him. Then one man told them that they should not worry because his day was about to come. The other people did not understand what he meant.

So one day, the man decided to monitor Weasa. Whatever Weasa did that day, the other man was watching. Eventually Weasa went to the bush to ease himself. And after he had returned home, the other man went and picked the feaces of Weasa.

It was a harvest season. And just like other people had done, Weasa had also harvested his millet and piled a hip in the courtyard. At night, the other man who had monitored him took the feaces and pushed the stuff under the pile of millet. The following morning when Weasa went to scatter the millet for drying, he found there the feaces. He did not know who had done that to him. So, he moved with the feaces around the village demanding that the person who had done it should confess and be forgiven. However, no body came up to confess. Then Weasa said ‘usually they complain that I bewitch them but today, this one has brought himself’.

Weasa took the feaces and bewitched hoping that he was bewitching somebody else. Later, he began feeling sick. He thought that somebody else had bewitched him. He also became bedriden for years just like the other people whom he used to bewitch. When he became seriously ill, he decided to kill the other person whom he thought he had bewitched before he would also die. So, in trying to kill the other unknown person, Weasa killed himself. From that time, people in that Area lived in peace and there was no more fear among the people.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – ’A long time ago’ in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot because the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The narrator talks about a man who used to terrorise residents by bewitching them. However, with time the residents managed to make him bewitch himself.

The artist uses both narrative and flashback techniques to present his story.

The story shows that there is a conflict. The conflict is between Weasa and his community.

Umusani uwabiila mulilwana wewe

Yabawo khalakho umusani mutwela uwaba ni mulilwana wewe. Ela umusani uyo abe wabiila nabi mulilwana wewe uyo. Abe buli shosi shesi mulilwana akhola, umusani uyo ashibona inga shiibi. Buli imbuka inga umusani uyo akangulula bibyayo byewe nabitsya khulya bilyo munimilo tse mulilwana wewe. Ela mulilwana wewe inga imawo shesi aloma ta. Inga buli shikholikha ashilolakho busa wasila. Ni lwe shishenesho, wele wamuwa tsing’abi ela wafuna bibinu bikali naabi.

Umusani ukundi uyo inga wabone mulilwana wewe wafunile bibinu naabi, wetsula likoko ela waentsa khumuula. Lunakhu lutwela wenyukha watsya Ibufumbo omufumu inga akana ele mulilwana wewe. Inga watabuleyo, umufumu wakhola byekamakanga byewe, lwanyuma walomela umusani uyo ali mulilwana wewe amulimokho bubi bwosi ta. Wamulomela ali ni nashilyo anyalama wela umunu ukhalikho kumutawana ta. Umusani uyo inga waulile tsilomo tsomufumu, wamulomela ali ing’ana iwe bufumu imamo tawe. Wenama mubinu byomufumu wabukula kamapesi kesi aba wamuwele amala wakwa khuntsila watsya. Inga wenyukhile watsile, umufumu naye wakhola kamakanga kewe lundi, wamusindikha bisambwa byewe mushifani she inkwe. Umusani uyo aloma ali atsya ola khuntsila – mushisaali, Inkwe yasokha mushitsakha yamula.

Babanu besi alekha ingo balinda bali manya alote ne batamba lumubona ta. Oli tsinakhu tsabilawo bawulila bali isolo yayilila umunu ukundi mushisaali Ibufumbo. Bemungo mwewe atwela ni mulilwana benyukhilamo khutsya khulola. Inga bolileyo batuya bali niye is isolo yela. Basuuta kumulambo besa ingo batsya bakusikha.

Amala, oli bamala khusikha, umufumu khukhwama Ibufumbo wetsa inga aleba kamasiina komunu esi umusani ukundi uyo akana khukhula. Babanu bamulakyilila omusani uwaba mulilwana uyo. Inga umufumu watabuleyo, wonkyela umusani uyo lukano inga uwoshewe uyo abe nakana khumula. Ela wamubolela inga nakhola kamakanga inkwe yamuulila mushisali inga ali khuntsila akobola ingo. Umusani uwaba mulilwana wasima naabi umufumu uyo lwekhuwonisa bulamu bwewe ela watsya wakangulula ing’afu wamuwa inga khasimo lwe shikholwa shewe.



Once upon a time, there lived a man called Wanambwa. That man had a neighbour whose name was Kutosi. He was a very good man but Wanambwa did not like him. The achievements of Kutosi never pleased Wanambwa. Because of that, he could on several occassions let his cows roam and destroy Kutosi’s crops in the garden. Inspite of that, Kutosi never complained at all. Because of his behavior, God blessed him with wealth. He became more rich than Wanambwa.

However, as he prospered, Wanambwa became more unhappy. One day, he left and went to a witch at Bufumbo with the intention of trying to kill Kutosi. When he arrived there, the witch consulted his spirits and found out that Kutosi whom he wanted to kill had no problem with him. He then told the Wanambwa that he could not kill for him his neighbour because he was an innocent person. The man took his hand to the things of the witch and picked the money which he had paid to the him, saying that the witch had no spiritual powers. After he had gone away, the witch sent one of his spirits which went in form of a Leopard and attacked the man on the way and killed him.

People at home waited for him to return but he could not. A few days later, they recieved reports that an animal had killed a person somewhere in the forest, on the way to Bufumbo. Members of his family and the Kutosi went and found out that actually he had been killed. They carried the body home and buried it.

Later, the witch came from Bufumbo while asking for Kutosi whom the other man had wanted to kill. People directed him to his home. When he reached there, he narrated to Kutosi how the other dead man had wanted to kill him. He explained how he sent his spirit in form of a Leopard and it killed him while on his way back. Kutosi thanked the witch so much for having saved his life and offered him a cow in appreciation.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – ’A long time ago’ in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The narrator uses narrative and flashback techniques.

The narrative has also got the plot. This is because the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The story teaches us that we should love one another. The narrator also uses a good language to present his story. The language he uses is not obscene.

Bakhana barano

Yabawo khalakho, kumumu kwalubukha kwokha bibinu byosi mushifo shitwela. Tsinyinyi tsatakhilawo ilala. Mushisela isho shenyola shili kunani kwa mitsa tsinyinyi tsakwo, mushilayi khunulo khwe lulutsi. Tsinyinyi itso tsaba isaka ni liola. Tsinyinyi itso tsaba nga tsanela bulayi, ela nga tsesi umunu wosi alolokho wekomba.

Yabawo bakhana barano mushifo esho, babatsyatsaka mushibiso na bakhula tsinyinyi itso. Buli lunakhu kunani kutsya kutuya nga bakhulile tsinyinyi tsakwo. Kunani kwelebatsaka umunu ukhula tsinyinyi tsakwo ne kwatamba lumanya ta. Lunakhu lutwela, kunani ukwo kwalola khalebe khamiliu nabi, kwakhakalamba amala kwakhala munyinyi itso. Shisela oli shola nga bushele, bakhana abo batsya munimilo ye linani khukhula tsinyinyi.

Lwanyuma lwekhumala khukhula tsinyinyi, umukhana mutwela wabona khalebe khe kunani. Umukhana uyo walanga bashewe betse babone khalebe akho. Inga bosi babusane isi khalebe khali, balekyikha khukhekhalakho, mutwela nga enyukha ukundi ekhala. Lwanyuma umukhana uwasembayo esi balanga bali Seera naye wekhala. Umukhana oyo abe wamilia nabi. Seera nga wekhale khukhalebe ekho, khamuamba. Bashewe embo bamuwelo bakhwesa, batakhunyala ta. Mangu ako, kunani kwetsa nga kwemba kumwenya kuli:

Khasaka namitsila kumutambo, mambile mambile
Khalebe khalebe, mambile nolile nolile.

Bakhana babalama nga bawulile kunani kwemba batutukha balekha Seera. Kunani nga kwolile, kwenyusa Seera khukhalebe kwmuila ingo wakwo. Oli mushilo babanu bosi bakonile, kunani kwalomela Seera khukulankyilila akuyile iwawe. Seera naye wakulankyilila wakuila. Inga wakwolisileyo, kunani kwamulomela imawo khukhwasimula namwe khukholola ta. Kunani ukwo kwakona awo khukhwola kumutikhinyi. Bemuntsu baloma bali bekulawo kumulyango, kunani ukwo kwepa muntsu kwaamba bakhana bane abe bababa nga batutushile ni basaali bene bosi kwa balya. Kwalamisaokho Seera onyene isi kwayila ingo watsya khuba inga umukhasi wakwo.



Once upon a time, a severe drought hit the land and made everything to dry up. It was extremely difficult to find vegetables. At that time, it was discovered that the Ogre had grown its vegetables along the river banks down the valley. The vegetables had grown up very well and were very attractive to the human eye.

There were five girls in the neighbourhood who used to go secretly and uproot the vegetables. Every time the Ogre went there, found the vegetables uprooted. The Ogre wondered as to who was doing it. One day, the Ogre made a very beautiful chair, bewitched it and placed in the garden of vegetables. Time came and the five girls went down the valley for vegetables as usual.

After uprooting vegetables which were enough for the day, one girl saw the chair. She called on the others to come and see the wonderful chair. When they had all gathered around, they began to sit on it in turns, one after the other. Among the five girls, there was one who was very beautiful called Seera. She was the last to sit on the magic chair. Unfortunately, the chair traped her and she could not get up. The other four girls tried to pull her but they could not manage. The Ogre then came while singing:

My chair, hold her for me, I am soon arriving
Hold her, hold her.
Problems made me to grow the vegetables, hold her, hold her.

When the other girls heard the Ogre sing, they ran away leaving Seera behind. Shortly after, the Ogre arrived and found Seera stuck on the magic chair. The Ogre picked Seera and took her home. At night, when all the people were asleep, the Ogre ordered Seera to lead it to their home. When they had reached there, the Ogre instructed her not to sneeze or cough. It stayed there till morning. When those who were inside woke up and opened the door, the Ogre dashed in, devert all of them and ate their flesh. The Ogre spared Seera only whom it took home as a wife.


The above oral narrative has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – ’A long time ago’ in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot. The events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how the five beatiful girls used to go and steal vegetables from the valley. After doing that for sometime, a trap was set and one of them was caught. The Ogre ordered the girl to take it to their home where it killed everybody. This story teaches young people that stealing is not good.

The narrator uses flashback and narrative techniques to present his story. The narrator uses the language carefully as he does not use obscene words in his presentation.
The characters in the story are the five girls and the Ogre.

There is also a conflict in the story. The conflict is between the five girls and the Ogre.

Mwambu ni seera

Yabawo khalekho umusani mutwela bamulanga bali Mwambu. Umusani uyo aba nu mukoko wewe mutwela onyene, lisina lyewe bali Seera. Umukhana oyo abe wamilia khutuma bakhana bosi khushalo isho. Ne khumbuka iyo, yabawo linani lilyaba nga lilya babanu. Esho shakyila Mwambu wafungatsakyila Seera muntsu inga atsya khwaisa tsing’afu. Ela abe nga alota, etsa nga alanga mulikona lyewe ali: Tse mwambu tsalota, tse Seera tsalota. Umukoko wewe naye abe nga waulile likona elyo, ekulowo kumulyango. Linani lyaentsa inkyelu yoosi lilye Seera ne lyakhasiwa. Lunakhu lutwela, linani lyatsya omufumu. Umufumu uyo walipangila buli shinu amala waliloma ali nenga otsyoli, wang’atuya tsiswa khuntsila tsipambulukha ukhalya ta. Walilomela ali kane nga wolileyo ulange likona lye Mwambu ela Seera kane ekule kumulyango. Linani nga lyatsile, lyola khuntsila lyatuya tsiswa tsipambulukha lyalya. Lyatsya lyola khuntsu ye Mwambu lyalanga:

Tse Mwambu tsalota, tse Seera tsalota.
Seera waloba khukula, walilomela ali ilyo lilime likona lye Mwambu ta. Lunakhu lundi, linani lyela omufumu. Umufumu ndi walipangila buli shinu amala walilomela ali ne wang’atuya tsiswa khuntsila tsipambulukha ukhalya ta. Lunakhu, linani lyekyunga ela lyatakhulya shishinu shosi khuntsila ta. Ela nga lyolile Omwambu, lyalangila ilala likona nga lye Mwambu ela Seera wekula kumulyango. Linani ilyo lyafakhila Seera lyamulya.

Mwambu uli alota khukhwama mubwayi, watuya Seera ango imawo ta. Mwambu wamanya busa ali linani lyamulile. Manguko, Mwambu waakala kamafumo kewe, walakyikha khuentsa linani. Inga walituyile, linani lyamukontselela lili alilekhe amala limulusile babanu bosi abe besi lyalya. Mwambu wafukyilisana nalyo walilekha lilamu. Linani ilyo mangu ako lyalekyikha khukhukokyisa ela lyalusaka babanu bosi abe besi lyalya nga mulimo ni Seera. Mubanu esi linani lyalusaka mwabamo khaloosi khatwela khakhelotsa khali khaleshilemo shinaka shakho. Mwambu wakhaloma khelomo khashibukule. Oli khelomo, linani lyekontselela Mwambu lili nembo undekhele mutwetela oyu shi. Mwambu walilomela ali imawo bubi ta. Umulosi walama munda mwe linani, akobolama lundi ta.



A long time ago, there on the land lived a man called Mwambu. The man had only one sister called Seera. That girl was extremely beautiful. At that time, there was an Ogre which devert and ate human beings. That made Mwambu to always lock up his sister in the house whenever he went to graze his cattle. On his return, Mwambu would call out: The cattle of Mwambu here come back, the cattle of Seera here come back. Seera would then open the door. That made it hard for the Ogre to get Seera. Therefore, the Ogre decided to seek the help of the witch doctor. The witch doctor prepared everything and adviced the Ogre not to eat anything on its way back. The witch doctor assured the Ogre that once that was observed, it would call out a voice similar to that of Mwambu and Seera would open the door. Unfortunately, on its way back, the Ogre found white ants flying and it ate. So, when it reached the home of Mwambu, it called out:

The cattle of Mwambu here come back, the cattle of Seera here come back.
The voice was very different from that of Mwambu and Seera could not open the door. She replied from inside – that is not the voice of Mwambu, my brother. The Ogre went away very dissappointed. On another day, the Ogre went back to the witch doctor. He again prepared everything for the Ogre and instructed it not to eat anything on the way. This time, the Ogre observed the instructions and could not eat anything. So, when it reached Mwambus’ home and called out, the voice was exactly like that of Mwambu and Seera opened the door. The Ogre graped her and ate her. When Mwambu returned home in the evening, he did not find Seera. He knew that the Ogre had eaten her.

Therefore, he sharpened his spears and went to look for the Ogre. When he found it, the Ogre pleaded for its life to be saved and instead vomit all the people it had eaten. Mwambu agreed to the request and spared its life. The Ogre then vomited all the people it had eaten including Seera.

Among those people there was an old woman who said that she had forgotten her tobacco pipe inside and requested to go back for it. She was allowed to go back. But when she was inside, the Ogre requested Mwambu to allow it remain with the old woman. Mwambu granted the permission and the old woman did not come out.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting like in other stories is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – a long time ago in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot because the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how one man called Mwambu had only one sister whom he loved so much and did everything possible to protect her.

The artist uses good language which has no obscenity. The characters in the story are three – Mwambu, Seera and the Ogre.

The artist uses narrative technique as he narrates the story from the begining to the end. He also uses a flashback technique as he keeps refering to the past events. The narrator also uses dialoquism in his presentation. This technique is applied where the Ogre pleads with Mwambu not kill it. The conflict in the story is between Mwambu and the Ogre.

This story teaches people to love their relatives and protect them the way Mwambu did.

Umukhana ukhamanya kyimilimo

Yabawo khalakho umukhasi mutwela. Umukhasi uyo wasala umwana wewe mutwela onyene umukhana. Umukhasi uyo watsoisa umwana wewe uyo nga amuikyisama kyimilimo ta. Banu babanti bamulomatsaka bali eyikyise umwana kyimilimo ne waloba, inga aloma ali umwana wewe wamilia nabi, inga wakholile kyimilimo asinya. Oli abona babana bebashewe bakholile kyimilimo basinyile, wabakuta. Buli lunakhu umukhasi atsya khulima alekha umwana muntsu nga akona. Umwana wewe watsowa nga imawo kumulimo kwesi amanya khukhola ta. Lutwela mayi wewe wafa wamulekha onyene. Umufubukha mutwela wamuyila. Ne nga bolile ingo wenyola ali umukhana uyo imawo kumulimo kwesi anyala ta. Oli atsya mukunda khulima watakhunyala ta, walekyikha khulila.

Lunakhu lutwela inga ali khulila kumutsimu kwo mayi wewe kwetsa, kwalekyikha khumulimila inga kwemba kuli:

Njabala, Njabala, Njabala – basho balima bali.
Mumbuka ifitili, kumutsimu kwaba inga kwalimile kumukunda kumukali nabi. Umukhana oyo watsya ingo. Umusetsa wewe nga welileyo imukunda wabona shifo shilimishile weyanga. Oli bwasha, umusetsa wewe watsya emola webisa mubusala inga akana khukakasa oba umukhasi wewe niye uwalimile kumukunda. Umukhasi nga wolile khumukunda walekyikha khulila. Oli umusetsa alio walolelele. Kumutsimu kwo masala wewe kwetsa. Kwalekyikha khulima ne kwemba. Umusani walulawo imola busa watsya ingo nga umukhsi wewe imawo shamanyilekho ta. Lwanyuma lwayo oli umukhasi walota, umusetsa wamuloma abuwe bibinu byewe byosi inga imawo khutekha ang’aba shekumutikhinyi ta. Umukhasi imbo akhaka khumuleba ilomo ikyilile amulobe, umusani walama aloma busa ali imawo shinu shindi shesi anyala waloma ta. Umukhasi imbo alila kamasika, umusetsa wekana ela umukhasi wabuwa bibyewe watsya.



A long time ago, there lived a woman. The woman gave birth to a baby girl. The woman did not train her child to do work as she grew. People would tell her to teach her child to do work but she objected saying her child was too beautiful to do work. Every morning she went out to dig alone leaving behind her girl sleeping. The girl grew up into a mature person without knowing how to do any kind of work. Time came and her mother died. One young man married her. But later the young man discovered that his wife did not know how to do anything. Whenever she went to the garden to dig, she could just cry.

One day as she was crying, the ghost of her mother appeared. It began to dig for her while singing:

Njabala, Njabala, Njabala – your friends dig like this.
Within a very short time, the ghost had dug a very large portion and the girl went back home. Later on when the husband went to the garden and saw the portion which had been dug, he was surprised. The following morning he went and hid himself in the nearby bushes to confirm whether it was really his wife who was digging the garden. As he watched, the ghost of his dead mother - in – law appeared and began to dig. The man then left his hide out and went back home. After the ghost had finished digging, the wife also left garden and went home. Unfortunately, when she reached, the husband told her to pack up her belongings and return to her father’s home. The girl tried to ask what the problem was but the man could not say anything. The girl cried but the man could not change his mind. Eventually, the girl packed up her belongings and left.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – a long time ago in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot. The plot is reflected by the systematic flow of the events from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how one woman brought up her daughter without leting her do work. Later, the woman died and left her daughter alone. After some time she got married. However, because she could not work, the husband abandoned her.

The narrator uses a good language. The language he uses has no obscenity. The narrator uses a narrative technique as seen by the narration of the story from the begining to the end. He also uses a flashback technique. The story has the characters who are the mother of Njabala, her husband and the ghost.

This story means that people should always teach their children to do work.

Wanakhamuna ni maito

Yabawo khalakho Wanakhamuna ni kusilu. Wanakhamuna aba umukyesi nabi ela inga akhola kyimilimo ni kamani khutmakho kusilu. Kusilu abe wasilwala ela inga ali umutolo mukhukhola kyimilimo. Buli imbuka abe Kusilu aka Wanakhamuna amukholele busa kyimilimo.

Lunakhu lutwela mumbuka ye khubyala bilyo, Wanakhamuna walima kumukunda kwewe bulayi nabi nga eng’onang’onela khubyala. Oli kusilu abona kumukunda kwa Wanakhamuna kwamilile, wamulomela ali nase tsonimilekho kukwose. Wanakhamuna wafukyilisa watsya wamulimila.

Imbuka oli yola iyekhubyala, Wanakhamuna watsya wabyala kumukunda kwewe. Oli wamala khubyala, Kusilu wamulomela ali nase tsya umbyalilekho. Wanakhamuna wafukyilisa khutsya amubyalile.

Kusilu wabukula maito umunkyi umwene wamuwa Wanakhamuna atsye amubyalile. Wanakhamuna wasuta maito watsya. Oli wola mukunda, mushifo shekhubyala, Wanakhamuna wekhala asi wela khulya maito tsena. Walya maito wosi wamala ela imawo imunga na ndwela isi abyala ta. Inga alimalile khulya maito, walima kamalowo munyilili, mukunda mwabonekha nga ubyalile. Lwanyuma lwayo, Kusilu aloma oli atsya mukunda abona kamalowo kamabimbilile, webasa ali Wanakhamuna wamubyalile maito.

Kusilu wela ingo walinda maito khulubula. Oli alolelela wabona mukunda mwa Wanakhamuna maito alubula ne mwa wewe ta. Welosela khulinda ali manya abone maito mukunda iwewe alubule watamba lubona ta. Awo nio esi ashifumbulila ali Wanakhamuna wamuwomela.

Walulawo watsya khuentsa Wanakhamuna nga wakhalale nabi. Ne Wanakhamuna aloma ali abona Kusilu ate nga wakhalale, wamanya ali wafumbule shesi amukhola. Awene ni awene akhali khulinda ta, Wanakhamuna walendukha tsindimo watima. Ne Kusilu naye wamwongamo khukhwolisa intsakamo wamuwamba. Lwanyuma lwe khumuwamba, Wanakhamuna walomela Kusilu ali inga ukana khukhuntsila, nyowa uentse esi shiswa shili amala usute mungakyi undunde khuwenekhwo. Ninashilyo Kusilu waentsa esi shiswa shili. Wasuta Wanakhamuna mungakyi amala wamutunda khushiswa. Ne mushifo she khufa, Wanakhamuna wepa mulowo litwela wakolela muwene. Kusilu walama khukankyi nga imawo shekhukhola.



A long time ago, there lived the Hare and the Hyena. The Hare was very clever, crafty and hardworking whereas the Hyena was very foolish and lazy. All the time, Mr. Hyena wanted the Hare to do for him everything.

One time, it was the time for preparing fields to make them ready for planting. The Hare worked on his field and made it ready for planting. After seeing how ready the Hare’s field was, Mr. Hyena asked the Hare to do the same for him. The Hare accepted and prepared the field.

It was time for planting, the Hare went and planted his garden. When he had finished to do his work, Mr. Hyena asked the Hare to do the same for him. The Hare accepted to do so. Mr. Hyena got his ground nuts and gave him to go and plant. The Hare picked the ground nuts and left.

When he reached in the garden, instead of planting the ground nuts, the Hare sat down and ate all the ground nuts. He then dug the holes in lines and covered them as if he had planted the seeds. Later, when Mr. Hyena went to the garden and saw the covered holes, he got convinced that the Hare had planted the ground nuts.

He went back home and waited for the ground nuts to germinate. However, after some weeks, he realized that as the ground nuts in the Hare’s garden germinated, there was not even a single seed which germinated in his garden. Mr. Hyena then noticed that the Hare had played him a trick.

Mr. Hyena then left the garden very angry and went to look for the Hare. But when the Hare saw Mr. Hyena and how angry he was, he knew that his trick had been discovered. Therefore, the Hare began running at once. Mr. Hyena followed up and got him.

Then the Hare told Mr. Hyena that ‘if you want to kill me, you need to look for where there is an ant hill, lift me up and then hit me on it.’ Mr. Hyena accepted. He looked for an ant hill, lifted up the Hare and hit him on it. But after hiting him on it, instead of the Hare dying, it disappeared into one of the holes. Mr. Hyena was left standing beside the ant hill with his anger boiling.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – a long time ago in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot because the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how the Hare and the Hyena were friends. The Hare was hardworking but the Hyena was lazy. Everytime the Hyena wanted the Hare to work for him. One time the Hare decided to teach his friend a lesson by eating the groundnuts he was given to plant. When the Hyena discovered the trick, he wanted to kill the Hare but still played him tricks and he survived. This story teaches us that in society there are wise and foolish people.

The narrator uses a narrative technique as he narrates his story from the begining to the end. He also uses a flashback technique as he talks about events of the past. He further uses dialoquism. This technique is used where the Hare pleads with the Hyena not to kill him. In this story we see a conflict between the Hare and the Hyena.

Basaani balondane

Yabawo khalakho Mugombolola ye Bukigai umusani mutwela bali Wamaniala. Umusani uyo abe wang’ona nabi ango ewe ela inga ali muindifu mubyayo ni liloba. Wamaniala uyo abe ali umunu isi buli mutwela abona ashila buwuli. Imbuka iyo, abe basungu bolile Muyuganda ela Baganda nga balikhubayeta khubalayisa buwuli bwawe. Ninashilyo, Baganda abo betsa batabula Ibukigai.

Inga batabule, batuya umusani mutwela mulutsi esinga. Balomela umusani uyo khubolesa omuwuli we shisintsa isho. Ne umusani uyo wabelomo ali nibo balimokho nu umuwuli wosi ta. Ela wabalomela ali ibanga baba ni umuwuli abe nenga Wamaniala. Nashilyo Baganda bamulomela abayile wa Wamaniala. Inga batabule ango, Wamaniala wabakanila bulayi ela walakyila bakhasi bewe babateshele bilyo. Lwanyuma lwekhumala khulya, Bakyeni abo nga batsya bafumbasa Wamaniala buwuli bwa Bukigai.

Khukhwamila awo, Wamaniala walekyikha khufuka Bukigai. Inga Wamaniala walekyikhile khufuka Bakigai, ashukhakho mangu waba umubi nabi ela buwuli bwewe bwabama bwe lukosi ta.

Mubuwuli bwewe, abenga wabone kamatoole mulusikho mwo munu kundi, abe alakyila busa balambi bewe bakyeka bamuyilila ingo. Shisela nga sholile, walimisa lukuto khukhwama Ibushiribo lwabilila Ibufukhula, Ibumatanda lwatsya lwatabula Ibunamubi. Nenga lukuto ulwo lwawele, abe tsing’afu tsifukyilisiwa khubililakho ta. Ela abe nga batuyile ing’afu yesi ili khulukuto ukhwo, abe bakyiamba bayilila Wamaniala, bamusintsila walya tsinyama.

Wamaniala alakyilatsaka banu nabatanya bisala byawe na bamuyilila khutsya khwola tsing’u. Bulu lunakhu kumutikhinyi, abe Bakigai bosi babusana wa Wamaniala khutysa khulamba kyimilimo. Bakhasi abe kumulimo kwawe khutysa mukunda khulima. Abo besi akanatsaka abe nabo busale abalomatsaka balame ango bamushele bulo. Ela abe nga Wamaniala wakanile umukhasi womusani yesi ukundi, alakyila busa balambi bewe bamuyilila ingo. Wamaniala ayilatsaka bakhana bebabanu busa inga akhwama ta. Ela basali be bakhana abo bekhoyatsaka lwekhuba bakhwalishile khumuwuli. Umusani uyo atsyatsaka nanyaka bashewe liloba lyawe busa lwekhuba niye umwami.

Bikholwa ebyo byakyela Bakigai bamuwentsela khumula. Yabawo basakhulu bakole babamawo batysa Ibulwa khuentsa kamakyesi. Balwa babawa kumusala kwesi bakobola eyo basikhila Wamaniala ango ela kwamula.

Wamaniala nga wafile, wandaye bali Makuma wela mubuwuli. Ne wandaye uyo waba indi umubi khutumakho wandaye. Makuma aba ni shinaka shewe shentsaka ne abe nga ashinywa, babanu betsa bamuambila nio wanywa. Mumbuka yeneyo, Baganda bamuwa indika iyekhutsilakho tsimbusano. Makuma walomela babanu ali kyimikulu kye indika yewe kyinywa kamabele nio yatima khulukuto. Babanu babusaka kamabele buli lunakhu nabayila wa Makuma. Oli bamala khuyila kamabele, Makuma wakobola eyi wapika kumukha mundika yewe watsya lukyendo.

Abe nga Makuma atysa lukyendo, abawo umunu umulondakho uwekhusindikha indika yewe khumusila. Abe Makuma aba ali khafuka indika ne umunu uyo walondilekho inyuma butima. Oli ola khumusila alulakho, umunu uyo wasindikha indika.

Bikholwa ibyo byakyela babanu bamukulisa esi Baganda. Babanu batysa bababolela bali mwawa Makuma buwuli ne wakhumanya khubala bibinu ta. Imbuka eyo abe intsala yakwawo ela Baganda balakyila babanu khubusa bilyo mumasitowa khumagombolola. Baganda nga bawulile bali Makuma wakhumanya khubala ta, batysa bamukhakyilisa. Bamuleba bali bilala ano uli na binga. Makuma wakolana shekhubelamo ela bakakasa bali wakhumanya khubala ta. Isho shakyela bamulusa ni mubuwuli bwe Bukigai.



A long time ago, there lived a man called Wamaniala in Bukigai sub – county. The man had a descent home and had plenty of land and cattle. That man had some qualities of leadership. At that time the British had arrived in Uganda and the Baganda were helping them to establish their rule in different parts of the country. The Baganda therefore came to Bukigai to establish the British rule. When they arrived in Bukigai, they found a man bathing in the river and asked him to show them the home of their chief. But the man told them that they had no chief. He told them that there was only an influential man in the Area called Wamaniala.

The Baganda then asked the man to take them to the home of Wamaniala. When they reached there, Wamaniala received them warmly and told his wives to prepare food for them. The visitors ate the food and refreshed themselves. Eventually when they were leaving, they declared Wamaniala the chief of Bukigai.

From that time onwards, Wamaniala began ruling the people of Bukigai. Unfortunately, when Wamaniala became chief of Bukigai, he immediately changed and began harrasing the people. Whenever he saw pleasant bananas in other peoples gardens, he just ordered his servants to cut them down and take to his home. Time came and he opened up a road from Bushiribo, passing through Bufukhula and Bumatanda to Bunamubi. However, after completing that road, people’s cows were not supposed to step on it. Any cow which was found steping on that road was taken to Wamaniala’s home to be slaughtered for meat. He also ordered the people of Bukigai to keep cutting down their trees and take to his home for firewood free of charge.

Every morning, the people of Bukigai, both men and women gathered at his home to do work for him. The work for women was to dig his gardens whereas men were to graze his cattle and perform other heavy duties. As he sent women to gardens to dig, those whom he wanted to make love with were usually told to remain behind and grind the millet. Whenever Wamaniala wanted the wife of another man, he would just order his servants to pick her and the husband was not supposed to complain. He also married people’s daughters freely without paying dowry. But the parents of such girls were usually happy because they had been married by the chief. Wamaniala would also take other people’s land by force without paying them.

Those terrible actions made the people to think about killing him. Some elderly men left and went to a place called Ibulwa on Mt Elgon. They consulted Balwa about the matter. Those people gave them a killer herb which they planted in Wamaniala’s compound upon their return and it killed him.

After Wamaniala’s death, his brother Makuma came to power and also ruled the people of Bukigai. However, he became more worse than his late brother. Makuma had a very long tobacco pipe and whenever he wanted to smoke it, he would order people to come and hold it for him. At that time, the Baganda gave him a bicycle which he would use when going to attend meetings. Then Makuma told the people that the tyres of his bcycle drink milk in order to fill up. So, he told the people to collect milk for his bcycle everyday. After collecting the milk, Makuma would just pump the pressure in his bcycle and go away. Whenever he went for a meeting, somebody was supposed to follow him to push the bcycle when climbing the hill. That person would run after him as he rode his bicycle.

Those actions made the people to undermine him. They went and told the Baganda that Makuma did not know how to count things. At that time, there was wide spread famine and the Baganda had issued an order for the people to collect food items and store them at sub-county levels.

The Baganda then went and tested Makuma. They asked him the total number of granneries he had. But Makuma could not tell the number. He instead told them to ask his Secretary. The Baganda then confirmed that Wamaniala did not know how to count things and they removed him from power.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting depicts the priod of colonialism.

The oral narrative has also got the plot because the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how the colonial agents reached Bududa. He explains how the colonial agents reached Bukigai and made Wamaniala a chief because of his personality.

There is also conflict in the story. The conflict is between the people of Bududa and the colonial agents. The story has got some characters. The characters in the story are the colonial agents, Wamaniala, his brother Makuma and the residents of Bukigai.

The language used is good. The narrator uses the language which is not obscene.

The artist uses both narrative and flashback techniques to present his story.

The story shows that there is a conflict. The conflict is between the administrators and the residents of Bukigai.

Umusani uwesinkyila mulutsi

Yabawo khale akho mugombolola ye Bukigai, umusani mutwela uwatsya ilutsi khukhusinga. Inga wolileyo, wefula tsingubo watsibikha anulo, walekyikha khukhusinga. Umusani wapa sabuni mumulwe walekyikha khukhuanyila kametsi. Lwanyuma aloma ali enyusa kumulwe wabona babanu babemi bali babankyi babene bamumilewo. Umusani wanya busa ali bano balime babanu ta ne bali sitani.

Umusani uyo shesi akhola wautula tsingubo tsewe, watima bukhuna watsya ingo. Umusani uyo atabula ingo ela asila busa, imawo shesi aloma ta. Oli mushilo walakyikha khubolela umukhasi wewe byesi aba wabone. Umusani inga akanikha amanyama ali bisitani ibyo byamulondilekho ta. Aloma ali nio alikhubolela umukhasi wewe muntsu, byalebela antsye bili khulomile khuli utsye ukhubole? Khukhwamila awo bulwale bwakwa khumusani walwala bulafu nabi. Imbo balebe bewe bakhaka khukyankyaba bwekana khukhwolisa umusani uyo wafa.



Once upon a time, in Bukugai sub-county, a man went to the river to bath at mid day. When he reached there, he removed his clothes, put them aside and began to bath. He began by applying soap on his body. After a short time, he lifted up his head, he saw satan in form of extremely short people nearly one foot tall. The man was griped with fear. He then picked up his clothes and ran away nacked. The man didn’t see satan follow him. When he reached home, he kept quite till night time. Then at night he began narrating to his wife the story of what he had seen at the river that day. Little did he know that the beings were outside listening to him. So, suddenly, he heard a voice asking from outside – did we tell you to publicise us? The man then fell sick. His relatives tried to treat him but they could not manage and eventually he died.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – a long time ago in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot because the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end.

The story shows that there is a conflict. The conflict is between the man and Satan. The story also has some characters. The characters are a man who bathed from the river, his wife and Satan. The language is used properly. The narrator uses both narrative and flashback techniques. The narration reaches deunudation by Satan causing death to the man.

Umukhasi ni shuu

Khalakho inga babanu bashili khukhutsula naabi ta, tsintsitsi abe tsasiba bisala ela inga babanu nikhufula be shikhasi barya khutsyayo. Abe khuntsitsi khulikho busa bifo bilala bikyekhe bili bikhasiba ta, esi abe babanu batsya bataa kametsi ni khukhusinga. Ela ni lwe khusiba khwe tsintsitsi, shalomikhatsaka shili sitani amenya mubifo byene ibyo. Ela abe shakhila babanu natala babana ni bakhasi khutsya khukyenda ilutsi muwankyilwe ta.

Lwekhusiba khwe tsintsitsi, iweneyo yabatsakeyo kyimisulu kyesi abe bakhasi batsya khwaa bakyitekhomo tsinyinyi. Ne lwekhuba abe shilomikha shili sitani amenya ilutsi ate abonekha muwankyilwe, abe bakhasi bakana khukhwaa tsinyinyi batsya angolobe inga inyanga yakwile. Ninashilyo abe kumusi basetsa bawe baashila khubakulila tsinyinyi.

Mugombolola ye Bukigai abe khatale khabowo lunakhu lwekhane lwonyene buli sabiti ela lunakhu ulwo abe buli musani ashila khutsya mukhatale khukulila umukhasi wewe inyama. Ela abe umunu yesi ukyenia khushalo isho, abe atsya lunakhu lwo khane nio akyila walya inyama.
Ne i Bukigai, yabayo umusani mutwela abe ukhakana khukulila umukhasi wewe tsinyinyi ta. Ela lwokhane lutwela, mayi womukhasi wewe watsya khubabonakho. Inga wolileyo, umwana wewe umumasala wamulekha awo watsya mukhatale. Umukhasi wewe webasa ali watsile khukula inyama lwekhuba bali nu mukyeni. Umukhasi watekha bilyo, walindilila busa umusetsa wewe alele inyama. Ne shekhukhuyangisa, oli yola sawa tse
khulya she kumusi, umusetsa wewe wakobola inga wamelile ate inga imawo inyama ta. Isho shakhalasa nabi umukhasi wewe ela wenyukha watsya ilutsi muwankyilwe khukhwaa ishuwu (green vegetables).

Umukhasi uyo aloma ali alikhaa tsinyinyi, waulila likona limulebela imukongo lili nanu ukhulomele ali utse wae kamang’ulye kase kesi nikhuyila? Wakhumanya oli shalelo lwe khane ta? Lwoshina mukhatsile mukhatale khukula tsinyama? Awo ni nawo, umukhasi uyo wamanyilila shishinu shesi akhabona ta, shimupa lwiyi. Umukhasi wakwa asi wabalikha. Babanu baloma bali bama mukhatale bakobolaka ingo, batuya umukhasi wakwile awo ate inga ali uwekhufa. Babanu abo bashimanya busa bali sitani wamutuyile inga aa tsinynyi.

Awo ni nawo batima ingo bakangulula imbusi bakyiila ilutsi bakyisintsileyo nio umukhsi watelela. Inga umukhsi welile ingo, mayi wewe wenyukha akhali khulya bilyo ta watsya. Inga wolile ingo wabolela umusakhulu wewe. Umusakhulu inga waulile tsilomo itso, wakhalawo ali umukhana wewe alule omusani uyo.

Antsye inga bwashele, umusakhulu uyo walanga balebe bewe likhumi. Wabalomela bakangulule tsing’afu tsitalu, tsimbusi tsine, itwaya, wabaa ni bibinu bibinti swa byesi umusani uyo aba wabakhwela. Balebe bewe basuta bibinu ibyo byosi bamusileyo ela bakobola nu umukhana wawe.

Oli umukhsai uyo wamenya ango obaba wewe khumala kumwesi mutwela, umusani ukundi uwa umuindifu we tsing’afu wetsa wamuselela ela waa baba womukhana uyo tsing’afu kamakhumi kabili ni bibinu bibinti swa. Umusani uyo watsya walinda umukhasi uyo mubulayi nabi, ela inga buli lunakhu lwo khane amukulila tsinyama ni bibinu bibinti.



In the past, when people were not very many, the rivers passed through the bushes because wide areas on both sides of the rivers were not tilled for farming. There were just a few open places where people usually went to fetch water and bath. Women would go in groups because the areas were too bushy. And because of the thick bushes, it was said that satan lived at the rivers and that he would appear to the people at mid-day when it is very hot, and so it was not advisable for the people to the rivers during the hot hours of the day.

Because of the presence of the thick bushes at the rivers, there grew some green plants which could be prepared for source. Usually women whose husbands did not buy vegetables, went there to collect those green plants to prepare source. And because it was said that satan lived at the rivers and would appear to people during the hot day, it was advisable for women to go there in the evening when the sun is setting. So, during the day, they depended on their husbands who were supposed to buy the vegetables for them.

In Bukigai sub-county, every Thursday was and still is a market day and every married man is supposed to go to the market and buy meat for his wife or wives. And whoever wanted to visit a relative did so on that day because it was a day when meat was made available almost in every household.

However, there was one man who always did not want to buy meat for his wife. One Thursday, his mother in-law went to visit them. After her arrival, her son in-law left home and went away. His wife thought that he had gone to the market to buy meat. So, she prepared the food and only waited for her husband to take meat home. To her suprise, when it was time for lunch, her husband returned home drunk and without meat. This angered the wife very much and she decided to go to the river at mid-day, the prohibited time, to collect the wild vegetables and prepare the source.

And as she plucked the leaves of the green plants, she heard a voice asking her: who told you to come and pluck the leaves which I use to clean my ass? Don’t you know that today is a market day? Why didn’t you go to the market to buy meat? There and then, something invisible struck the woman and she fell to the ground unconscience. When people were returning to their homes from the market, they found the woman lying there. They automatically knew that satan had got her collecting the green plants. So, they rushed home and brought a he-goat which they slaughtered from there and the woman recovered her conscience. When they took her back home, the mother could not wait for food. She just got up and went away. When she reached home, she narrated the whole story to her husband. The husband became very furious and decided that her daughter should be withdrawn from that man.

The next day, he called ten of his relatives. He told them to untie three cows, four goats and one cock. He also gave them other items which that man had given them for dowry. He told them to take back those things and return with his daughter. The relatives did as they were instructed. They went and returned with the daughter.

When the woman stayed at his father’s home for a month, another wealth man went and married her. The second man handed over twenty cows and many other items for dowry. That man looked after that woman very well and could provide for everything, everyday.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – a long time ago in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot because the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how the woman went to the river at a wrong hour to look for vegitables and was assaulted by Satan. Later she was rescued by people returning from the market.

In this story, the conflict is between the wife and her husband.
The characters are the uncaring husband and the suffering wife.
The narrator uses both the narrative and flashback techniques.
The language is properly used.

The narration reaches deunudation by the woman being withdrawn from the man’s home by her relarives. The story has the implication that husbands need to be caring to their wives.

Khukhwombekha mushisali

Yabawo khalakho umusani mutwela watsya mushisali washisheeba wombekha intsu. Inga wamalile khukhwombekha intsu iyo, mushisela shifiti shili walekyikha khukonomo. Ne lwekhuba intsu iyo yaba ishili inyilifu, umusani uyo aba inga asatsakilamo kumulilo nio akyila afune bukhafu.

Ne umusani uyo abe wabaya tsingokho tsewe mubunkyi. Sitani wamatsaka mushisali nalya tsingokho etso. Umusani welebatsaka nanu ulyatsaka tsingokho tsewe nenga imawo shamanya ta. Umusani uyo walomanatsaka nenga imawo shishukhakho ta. Tsingokho tsewe tselosela busa khukola.

Lunakhu lutwela ashilo, umusani ali khaolela kumulilo, waulila sitani tsena etsa inga alomana, ali shalelo khakhutsye akhubolele tsingokho tsewe natsilikha. Umusani uli nio aliwo, wabona sitani tsena enkyila muntsu mushifani she bimwewe. Akhali khulinda ta, umusani wataa kumulilo mumayika watsukha khubimwemwe ibyo.

Awene ni awene awo, sitani tsena wepa antsye, watsya inga alila ali – wookha babaana baase, wookha babaana baase. Khukhwamila awo sitani uyo wakama khulya tsingokho tsomusani uyo.



Along time ago, there was a man who went to the forest and cut down part of it and then constructed a house. The man began living in that house there and then. And because the house was not yet dry, he used to light fire in it. The man had his chicken. Satan used to come from the forest and eat the man’s chicken. The man used to complain and wondered as to who was stealing his chicken.

One evening, as the man sat around the fire to warm himself, satan emerged from the forest and came while fumingh, saying let us go and he us why he is complaining about the chicken. Within a very short time, the man saw satan enter the house in form of light. Without any delay, the man scooped the fire and whirled it at the light.

Satan then rushed out while crying – oh he has burnt my children, he has burnt my children. From then, that satan stoped eating the man’s chicken.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – a long time ago in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot because the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how one man build a house in the forest and then later Satan started graping his chicken. The narration reaches the deunudation when the man chases Satan using the fire at night.

In the story, the conflict is between the man and Satan.

Language is properly used. The language has no obscenity at all.

The narrator uses both the narrative and flashback techniques to present his story.
The characters are the man and Satan.

Busolo ni Basungu

Khalakho, Basungu inga betsile khufuka Uganda banyoela mubuganda. Lwanyuma lwekhutelesa buwuli bwawe mubifo bye Buganda, babukula baganda babandi babeyetisa mukhusalanisa buwuli bwawe mubifo bibindi bye muyuganda. Mutwela khunibo aba Semei Kakungulu. Uyu niye umuganda uwalela buwuli bwe Babangereza mubugisu ni mubifo bibindi bye bwamanyanga wa Uganda.

Shilomikha shili Kakungulu inga wolile mubisintsa ibyo, arambisa kamani ni lukosi khula buwuli bwe Babangereza mubisintsa byesi atsyatsakamo. Baloma bali mubifo bibindi bamwakanila ni lukosi ne mubindi babekhali bamulwanisa. Shilomikha shili Bududa shili shitwela khubifo esi balwanisila babanu bewe.

Tsingano tsiliwo tsiloma tsili Baganda ni Basungu inga bolile Ibududa, babekhali babalwanisa naabi. Khusintsila khungano itso, Basungu ni Baganda abe bakwala tsikantsu tsing’wanga ela bakyenda ni kyimilundu. Bali akhali khulinda ta, Baduda balekyikha busolo ni babanu abo inga beyetisa kamafumo ni tsingabo. Ne baali abe Baduda inga batsile khulwana ni nabo, Basungu ni Baganda bema busa akhunu aleyi babakhupa kamasasi inga beyetisa tsimundu tsawe.

Shilomikha shili Baduda inga babone tsimundu tse Basungu, bebasa baali tsinimbo tse bushele. Oli babona Basungu ni Baganda bema akhunu aleyi babela, baloma baali Babanu abo baali ni tsinimbo tsawe tsesi bakhwolesa busa baali nokwa asi ufa. Baali inga Baduda baboone baali balikhufa mubukali naabi, bakhalawo batutukha batsya munkyinkyi. Ni khukhwamila awo, Basungu ni Baganda baamba shifo isho, balobola ni mubekhaali abo bababonekhana baali banyala khuba babaami balayi, babaa bunyala bwekhufuka bashawe.



Long ago, when the British came to rule Uganda, they began from Buganda region. And after establishing their rule among the Baganda, they picked on some of the Baganda and used them to spread their rule to other parts of Uganda. The available stories say that Semei Kakungulu was one of them. They say this is the Muganda who brought the British rule to Bugisu region and other parts of Eastern Uganda.

It is said that in Kakungulu used both force and peaceful means to establish British rule in different parts of Eastern Uganda. It is said that in some parts, he was recieved peacefully while in other parts, he faced resistance from the local people. They say Bududa is one of the areas where he faced resistance from the local people.

The prevailling oral narratives have it that when the Baganda and the British reached Bududa, the local people fought them. According to those narratives, the British and the Baganda were dressed in white robes and they had the guns. The oral narratives among the people of Bududa say that the local people waged war against those foreignors using spears and shields. That whenever the people went out to fight the British and their supporters from Buganda, they always short at them from a distance. According to the available oral narratives, the people of Bududa took the guns to be the usual sticks known to them. And when the British short at them , killing them instantly, they said that the invaders had their magic sticks which they could just point at the people and they fall down on the ground dead.

It is said that when the fighters of the people of Bududa realised that they were dying in large numbers, they withdrew and went to the mountains. The British then took over the place. Then they selected some of the capable residents and made them chiefs to rule the rest.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting shows establishment of colonial rule. The artist does that by stating clearly what the British did during the establishment of the colonial rule.

The oral narrative has also got the plot. Looking at the oral narrative, it becomes clear that the events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how the Baganda were used by the British to spread colonial rule in the different parts of Uganda. He explains how the people of Bududa responded to the efforts by the British to establish colonial rule in their area.

In this story, the conflict is between the people of Bududa and the whites.
The narrator uses both narrative and flashback techniques.
The characters are the people of Bududa, the Baganda and the British.
The narration reaches deunudation when the people of Bududa retreat to the mountains after coming under serious gunfire.

Umukhaana umumiliwu

Yabawo khalakho khushalo shitwela Ibududa umukhana baali Seera. Umukhana uyo abe wamilia naabi. Lunakhu lutwela watsya ni bashewe babandi barano khushina inemba. Oli boola khunemba, batuya shikhutu shefulile likhobola lyasho lyalileshile awo. Seera walomela bashewe ali akana khukhukyelasa mulikhobola ilyo. Ne aloma ali alikyelasomo, likhobola ilyo lyamulobelakho wafanana ni shikhutu.

Bashina inemba khukhwolisa khuntsakamo. Oli inemba yakama, basololi betsa babukula bakhana bashewe barano batsya ni na naabo inga bakhasi bawe balekha awo Seera. Lwanyuma Mwambu aloma ali abiila, waboona shishinu shesi ebaasa ali shikhutu. Mwambu washisuta inga aloma ali: nangala shikhutu shankye – watsya ninasho ingo.

Bwaloma oli busha, Mwambu washilekha ango watsya khukyenda. Lwanyuma lwo Mwambu khutsya, Seera wefula likhobola lyeshikhutu, walekyikha khukhola kyimilimo. Weya ango, wasiinga tsisaani ni tsisepikyi na buli shiinu. Lwanyuma lwekhukhola kyimilimo, Seera wakwaala likhobola lye shikhutu. Mwambu aloma ali alota, watuya inga ango buli shinu shamilile. Weleeba, ali nanu ukholile kyimilimo ekyi?

Oli busha, Mwambu watsya lundi. Seera naye wakhola kyimilimo lundi. Lwanyuma Mwambu wakhalawo khukhubisa abone nanu ukholatsaka kyimilimo ango ewe.

Inga bulishele lundi, Mwambu wenyukha watsya. Oli wola khuntsila, wafumba wakoboola ingo webisa mutala lyetsing’afu. Aloma ali nio alola ali, wabona Seera efuula likhoboola lye shikhutu. Mwambu waboona Seera inga umukhana umumiliwu naabi. Mwambu waloma ali ing’ana nasuta eni nasutile shikhutu ng’ana nasuuta umukhana umumiliwu ali.
Oli nio ashiliwo alyo, Seera watysa mushilala waabukula bulo wabuula khulusisi walekyikha khubusha inga emba kumwenya kwewe ali:

Ise Mwambu antsangala, bulayi bwoosi bulimushikhutu
Ise Mwambu antsangala, bulayi bwoosi buli mushikhutu.
Aloma ali alikhaemba alyo, Mwambu walula mutala lye tsing’afu, wafelafela imoola, wabukula likhobola lye shikhutu walyookha kumulilo. Lwanyuma lwe khukhwokha likhobola ilyo, walomela Seera ali ng’ana nasuta eni nasutile shikhutu ng’ana naasuta iwe umukhana umumiliwu uli. Wamulomela ali khukhwamila shalelo, iwe uli umukhasi wose.



A long time ago, there was a very beautiful girl called Seera, in one of the places in Bududa. This girl was extremely beautiful. One day, she went with other five girls from the same place to go and dance a traditional dance called Inemba. When they reached there, they found a shell which had been left there by the tortoise. Then Seera told her counterparts that she wants to put on that shell. She then picked the shell and put it on. However, when she wanted to remove it, the shell could not go off. So, Seera remained like a tortoise. The girls danced to the end. And after the dance, the other five girls were picked by the boys as wives and were taken away. Seera remained at that place in form of a tortise.

Later, when Mwambu passed by, he saw what he took to be a tortoise and picked it while saying ‘I have found my tortoise.’ He carried it home without knowing that he was carrying a very beautiful girl.

In the morning, Mwambu left home and went away. When he had gone away, Seera removed the tortoise shell and began to do work. She swept the house and washed all the utensils. When Mwambu returned home in the evening, he was very much suprised to see the house the way it was. The next day, he again went away and Seera did what she had done the previous day.

So, Mwambu decided to hide himself and see who exactly was doing the work at his home. So, on the third day, Mwambu pretended to be going away. When he reached somewhere on the way, he returned home secretly and hid himself in the kraal. And as he watched, Seera removed the tortoise shell. Mwambu saw her as a very beautiful girl. He said to himself ‘ I thought I was carrying a tortoise yet I was carrying a very beautiful girl.’ As he watched, Seera went to the grannery for millet. She immediately began grinding the millet while singing:

Ise, Mwambu antsangala bulayi bwoosi buuli mushikhutu
Ise, Mwambu antsangala bulayi bwoosi buuli mushikhutu
As for me, Mwambu collected me, I had been ignored but the full beauty is in the tortoise
As for me, Mwambu collected me, I had been ignored but the full beauty is in the tortoise.

Without the shell, Mwambu realised that what he took home was not a tortoise but a very beautiful girl.

Then he went secretly without the knowledge of Seera and picked the tortoise shell. He set it on fire and was burnt to ashes. After burning it, he said to Seera that ‘I thought I had carried a tortoise yet I carried you, a very beautiful girl.’ From today onwards, you are my wife.


The above oral narrative shows that it has got a setting. The setting is depicted to be many centuries into the past. The artist does that by using the words – a long time ago in his introduction. Looking at the use of these words, it is difficult to tell whether it is five, twenty or two hundred years ago. What we know is that the things he talks about happened many years ago.

The oral narrative has also got the plot. The events being narrated flow in a systematic manner from the begining to the end. The artist talks about how one beautiful girl called Seera went with five others to attend a local dance. He explains how she wore a tortoise shell and it got stuck on her body. When the dance ended, the other girls were picked by the boys and they left Seera there thinking she was a tortoise. Later, she was picked by one man called Mwambu. A few days afterwords, Mwambu discovered that what he had carried thinking he was carrying a tortoise was a very beautiful girl whom he decided to marry.

The story teaches us that we should not despise certain things as we may lose better opportunities.

The characters in this story are Mwambu, Seera, the other four girls and the boys who picked them after the dance.

Language use is very good as it has no words of obscenity.

The narrator uses both narrative and falshback techniques to present his story.

The story reaches deunudation by Mwambu discovering that what he took to be a tortoise was a very beautiful girl.


Kembabazi M (2000). The Entertainment Role of Folktales among the Bakiga – a Dissertation (BA, Educ.), Kampala, Makerere University.

Lakareber J (2004). The Role of FolkTales in Shaping Morals and Behaviour of Girls and Young Women among the Acoli – a Dissertation (BA, Educ.), Kampala, Makerere University.

Mushengyezi A (1999). Towards a Psychoanalytic Understanding of Folk Myths and Legends and their influence on Cultural Ideology in Ankole – a Dissertation (MA), Kampala, Makerere University.

Wako J (2001). The Spiritual Role of Legends among the Baganda – a Dissertation (BA), Kampala, Makerere University.

Wamitila KW (2008), Kanzi ya Fasihi, Nairobi, Vide – Muwa Publishers Limited.

Wamitila KW (2008), Kichocheo Cha Fasihi Simulizi na andishi, Nairobi, Focus Books.


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