HEA1: ORIGIN OF THE LANGI

This unit is about the origin of Langi people.

ORIGIN OF THE LANGI

These are not part of the main group of the Luo migration. They are a result of intermarriage between the Ateker speakers who came from the North east and the Luo who came directly from the North.

ORIGIN OF THE JAPADHOLA

They lived in Tororo. They are descendants of two groups of people;

One group came from Pubungu and moved through Lango to the East settling in Tororo.

The other group was part of Labongo`s group which moved eastwards.

Some of them moved into Teso, Bugwere and others Mbale and Tororo. They know themselves as descendants of adhola, one of the earliest rulers.

As population increased, they all united to form a united society so as to survive in times of attacks and natural obstacles. They soon dominated the area.

ORIGIN OF THE LUO OF KENYA AND TANZANIA

The movement of the Luo into Kenya and Tanzania marks the furthest and final stage of their migration.

The Luo of these areas claim to be descendants of Lamogi though it isn’t clear.

Tradition has it that the Luo moved into Nyanza into 4 main groups;

 

JOKA-JOK

This group want connected with Pubungu but came directly from Sudan into Northern Uganda and settled at Lamogi

They later moved via Gulu, Soroti and Mbale into Nyanza province.

JOKA –OWINY (sometimes referred to as Joka-Rwo) meaning people of the chief /king.

They are said to be connected to the Japadhola of Eastern Uganda.

They were led by Owiny and they moved into the Nyanza province during the 17th century.

JOKA-OMDO

These migrated from Pawir. They moved eastwards through Busoga and Bukedi into the Nyanza province during the 17th Century.

THE ABASUBA

This was a mixture of people from Buganda and Busoga. They were not Luo but soon became Luo speakers because their number was small so they were absorbed into the Luo-society.

A Lango chief with elaborate headdress.

lango

THE ORGANISATION OF THE LUO SOCIETY

POLITICAL ORGANIZATION;

They didn’t have a centralized government

They were organized into small states headed by the Rwot

The state was organized into clans and lineages each Luo family belonged to a clan

The states were independent of each other but re-organized as members of bigger units called Ogendin.

The chief was advised by the leading elders of major clans

The elders made a council called Bueh Piny

The council was expected to settle disputes in the community and discipline wrong doers

There was original police forces led by an elder called Ogu/ Mama

The Lodido was a leader of a clan council

The council of elders was in charge of maintaining law and order.

ECONOMIC ORGANISATION

The Luo did some agriculture

They grew crops like millet, peas, beans, yams, bananas, G.nuts and sweet potatoes

Tobacco and cotton were grown for both exchange and local use

They kept cattle for meat, milk and marriage gifts

Men did hunting, fishing and clearing land for cultivation also for payment and favors like goats, chicken, dogs, sheep etc.

They also helped women in sowing and harvesting

SOCIAL ORGANISATION

The Luo believed in one supreme creator called Nyasaye

Animals were respected because they believed that they were ancestors who had returned to earth in a different form.

They had spirits called Jusogi which were believed to heal diseases.

When the chief priest discovered the cause of the sickness, sacrifices were offered at a grave of the suspected spirits

Sacred places were established where people gathered to witness prayers and sacrifices.

EFFECTS OF THE LUO MIGRATION

They increased population were they settled

They introduced the Luo language

They introduced new cultural elements like pet names; Akiiki, Abwoli, Amooti etc

They introduced new tribes through intermarriages i.e. Langi, Alur, Japhadhola etc.

They introduced the clan system of organisation

They introduced new crops like cotton, banana, tobacco, sweet potatoes

They introduced the idea of kingship or Rwot ship

They introduced new regalia items such as drums, throne, and fire.

They introduced the idea of separate burial places for Kings.

They established the Babito dynasty in Bunyoro-Kitara.

They introduced the system of granting land to clans.

They led to formation of sub dynasties such as Busoga, bukoli etc.

They opened up new areas for settlement like Kaberamaido.

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