An Imam who unknowingly wedded a fellow man in an Islamic wedding (Nikah) has been suspended.
Sheikh Mohammed Mutumba, the Imam of Kyampisi Masjid Noor mosque in Kayunga District, Central Uganda, was suspended as investigations into the shocking incident commenced.
According to regional Kadhi Sheikh Abdul Noor Kakande, the move to suspend the 27-year-old is aimed at preserving the integrity of the faith.
Marrying a fellow man
How did the Imam not realise he has married a fellow man two weeks into their union?
A fortnight ago, Mutumba exchanged vows with his ‘wife’ Ms Swabullah Nabukeera after meeting at the Kyampisi mosque.
“I was looking for a woman to marry and when I landed on a beautiful girl wearing a hijab, I asked her for love and she accepted. We fell in love, however, she told me we could not have sex until I take dowry to her parents and also exchange marriage vows,” narrated Mutumba.
Two weeks into their union, the couple is reported not to have gotten intimate as the ‘bride’ claimed that she was on her period.
Mutumba said that after his ‘wife’ claimed to be on her menses, he became patient, waiting for the right moment to consummate the marriage.
Theft, arrest, shocking revelation
It’s during the waiting period that things took a rather strange turn.
Mutumba’s neighbour accused his newly wedded wife of jumping over a wall separating their houses and stealing clothes and a television set.
The matter was reported at the Kayunga Police Station and police officers were dispatched to arrest Nabukeera.
According to the Kayunga District criminal investigations officer Isaac Mugera, Nabukeera was wearing a hijab and sandals when apprehended.
“As the police’s normal practice, a female police officer, searched the suspect thoroughly before taking ‘her’ to the cells.
“However, to the shock of the officer, the suspect had stacked clothes in the bra to hoodwink that they were breasts.
“On further search, we discovered that the suspect had male genitals. We quickly informed ‘her’ husband who had escorted her to the police station,” said Mugera.
Shocked husband, man unmasked
Shocked by the revelation, Mutumba requested for the police to let him look at Nabukeera’s privates to prove for himself that he’d wedded a man.
A dumfounded Mutumba raised an alarm, accusing Nabukeera of being a thief.
During interrogations, Nabukeera revealed that his real name is Richard Tumushabe and that he duped Mutumba so as to get his money. He was charged with impersonation, theft and obtaining goods by false pretence.
Nuuru Nabukeera, Tumushabe’s alleged aunt was also arrested and admitted that Mutumba had paid dowry including two goats, two bags of sugar, a carton of salt and a Koran.
She claimed that she did not know her ‘niece’ was male as she got to know him when he was already an adult.
According to Mutumba’s neighbours, they have not seen him for days, with a source telling Daily Monitor that the devastated Imam was receiving counselling from a relative. They also admitted that it was not easy to establish that Tumushabe was masquerading as a woman.
“The ‘bride’ did all the house chores such as cooking, washing clothes and others while the husband was away but it was not easy to know he was just masquerading as a woman,” a neighbour said.