THE Mdletshe Tribal Authority has come up with a new plan to try and prevent teenage pregnancy.
Inkosi Bonga Mdletshe (61), who has been in charge of the area at KwaHlabisa in KZN for more than 30 years, has ordered his izinduna to go house-to-house, collecting R1 000 for every child born out of wedlock.
Mdletshe said he was reviving an old culture that was performed by his forefathers to encourage young men and women to maintain the Zulu tradition of avoiding sexual activity before marriage.
“If they failed to do so in the past, the man who impregnated a woman was charged three cows for damaging the image of her parents and the tribe,” he said.
Mdletshe said two of the cows would be handed over to the woman’s family, and the third one would be taken by the inkosi.
“When I first became chief in the 1980s, the fine was R200, but we stopped issuing it during the early years of democracy.
“As we’re bringing back the tradition, the money will be put into the tribal trust for the maintenance of our offices, payment of salaries and expenses for tribal meetings,” said Mdletshe.
He added that the money could also be used to help a poor family when they have lost a loved one.
Induna Mlandiseni Mdletshe (61) of Ekuphindisweni Village said he was happy with the tradition.
He believed it would help to teach the youth that there’s a price to pay for doing bad things.
“Unplanned pregnancies paint a bad picture of our people. We are happy our tribe is bringing back the tradition of our forefathers that used for so many years,” said Mdletshe.