By Joan Salmon
During the first COVID-19 induced lockdown, Resty Nakimbugwe who stayed in Mbarara with her mother moved to Kyazanga to help her heavily pregnant sister. However, along the way, her estranged father also asked that she goes to his place to check on him as he was not well. Here, she met a stepmother who had no liking for her and accused her of several misdemeanours, a charade she continued until Nakimbugwe got punished. This daily bread of punishment did not go down well with the girl who soon chose to run away, braving a long trek to Kyazanga that she was only saved from by a stranger.
With Shs3,000 at hand, she managed to get to her aunt’s place where she stayed for a week before being asked to bring drinking water for a stranger. As she was leaving, she heard her cousin, with whom she stayed as well say to the man, “I hope you have seen her. That is the girl!”
Two months later, he brought for her a dress and shoes saying, “Thank you for all you do for us here.” The joy was cut short by intel from a girl in the neighbourhood who asked her if she knew she was getting married. Nakimbugwe was taken aback because she always thought her cousin had the best in mind for her.
Nonetheless, it brought back to mind the time he asked her if she still wanted to return to her father to which she vehemently refused. Connecting the dots, Nakimbugwe realised that he asked to ascertain her availability, and later learned that the deal was done and Friday was the day to go to her new home. Certain that marriage was not her desire, Nakimbugwe purposed to walk to Mbarara, but the plan was foiled when her cousin found her washing clothes in the rain.
“Are you planning to go somewhere?” On narrating her plan, he, without remorse, said she had to reimburse the money (Shs150,000) spent on her since her arrival, including that which bought the gifts as all had been given by her intended husband. With no escape route, her cousin told her to pack and go to her new home.
“Even if you stay there for just one day,” he said, “You will have repaid the debt.” Her aunt was also in on the plan.
Reaching the man’s place, whom she learned was a fisherman, Nakimbugwe discovered he had children older than her. On her first night, he locked her up in the house and went to ply his trade. Desperate to get help, she managed to get a phone and share her ordeal with her mother. With no money at that time, she promised her help by Wednesday. That would be a week in the man’s house at whose sight she always nauseated yet she had no choice but render sexual pleasure to her disgust. Click to read more…