By David Maillu
Published September 11, 2023

In traditional Africa nobody starved sexually because the practical social
order exercised a structure in which everybody had access to sex,
particular through marriage. Nobody in the community was too poor to get
married. Not even the bride price stopped one from getting married. If he
couldn’t afford the bride price, his family helped him get it. If the
family could not afford it, he was allowed to marry and pay the dowry in a
rate of installments he could afford. But even if he failed to pay the
installments, he still kept his wife. Dowry was not a commercial exercise
but a sign of responsibility on the side of the man.

Things have changed in post-colonial states because that social order has
broken down in many places. The drastic change has been in moving from
livestock economy to money economy where only employment can earn one the
money. What if one is not employed and he wants to get married?

Today marriage is maintained by money. Money for shelter, food, education,
child rearing, medical bills, school bills. Money, money and money in
everything, even money to the church. You are nothing if you don’t have

What woman would want to marry a man without any means of getting money?
The heaviest social burden falls upon young men. If they can’t afford
getting married, how would they cater for their sex life? Sexual demand,
like death, knows no poverty. It comes in full force and can be so
demanding that it can force the victim to commit crime for satisfaction.
That is why, on the social ground, rape cases are rocketing. Incest takes
course. Deception to get sex, infidelity, forced pregnancies on girls,
divorces, sexual brutality. Any expression to quench sex demand, including
sodomy, is sought. Then, here we are, the door to homosexuality has opened
widely. Prisons are teeming with sex offenders. The social and family
fabric is broken.

Where do we go from here? Any way out of this invites many theories and
guesses. But the deal remains. Get money or sink. No money no natural sex
satisfaction. It becomes a national problem. It is a bitter consequence
created by colonial culture. It is bitter reality because governments are
failing in restoring the traditional social order, the only way of killing
the monster. Imported social orders can’t address this devastation. The
god of sex has been sacrificed to colonial culture.