Opinion: African rituals promoting HIV?

African nations have had a fair share of various cultural rituals and beliefs both positive and negative.

We hold onto these rituals and beliefs in the effort of maintaining our true identity as Africans.

In Uganda, popular rituals include circumcision from Masaba land, female genital mutilation from the Sabiny, the function of the twins, introduction ceremonies for the girl child as she gets married.

Today, we are in the effort to sort those that are positively rewarding from those that cause more harm than good.

Eric Aniva, a sex worker known in Malawi as a “hyena” has been sleeping with young girls in the guise of initiation rights.


A hyena in Malawian culture is a man who has sex with widows or married women that cant get pregnant.

This HIV positive man who has also been earning a living from sleeping with children said that he did not tell those that hired him of his status.

President Peter Mutharika, the President of, Malawi ordered for his arrest and said that the police should investigate the defilement cases he clearly confessed to.

Presidential spokesman, Mgeme Kalilani said that Mr Aniva would further be investigated for exposing the young girls to contracting HIV and further be charged accordingly.

This culture is popular in the southern regions of Malawi where girls ought to have sex with a man after their first period no matter their age.

Malawi can be applauded for having banned child marriage last year making the legal age 18years from 15 years of age.

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