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What a nice little earner: Selling ‘kuria kee’ to abandoned wives


PORT MORESBY - Politicians, bureaucrats and men of all sizes continue to marry younger girls leaving their legally wedded wives, if you like, in a state of sex famine.

Most of these wives are abandoned with children and without any support.

Some legally wedded wives may have been housed by their well-to-do husbands in high covenant houses protected by razor wire or German shepherds (of the canine variety) and would never have slept with, or even seen, their husbands for many months or years.

Other middle income earners including security guards house their wives in urban ghettos or rural villages, parking them with relatives, and forget about them and their children’s’ welfare. The husbands reside and spend their meagre income with the latest wife.

Wives do not get to see their husbands regularly and it haunts them and enables them to employ bizarre tactics to win back their husbands’ love.

Many wives seek help from the pastors and are told to pray often and the Lord will make the husbands return home like the prodigal son in the bible.

Other abandoned wives sharpen daggers and kept a vigil for the husband’s new wife. Death or serious injury is the goal and sometimes they succeed.

Many wives were sentenced to long years in prison because they stabbed and killed their husband’s new lovers whilst the husbands walk off free. 

Some wives give up and seek love elsewhere, leaving the husbands to their new wives.

But it’s an ill wind indeed that blows everybody no good, and polygamous relationships and their aftermath create a new business opportunity.

That’s why you find many jobless people venturing into the sale of kuria kee (black magic) on the streets and in the villages.

Abandoned wives create a huge demand for the kuria kee and the cost of the service has become quite inflated.

And it’s not only deserted wives, but other wives in a polygamous marriage will seek kuria kee to keep the husband for themselves and slough off the other wives.

The custodians of these formidable powers are referred to as kuria kee keepers.

Kuria kee keepers are said to convert fickle husbands and make them return. There is also an assurance to the wives that, once they do return, they will follow the wives everywhere like a child trails its mother, even to the toilet.

So with this promise, abandoned wives download every toea in their bilums to the kuria kee keepers in order to accelerate the spell. Families will go without food and decent meals for months or even end up bankrupt as monies are diverted to the keepers.

Mary, the first wife of Pitz, who had six children lost one of her daughters to a sickness. Whilst mourning she lamented that the child died because she had an extra marital affair with Jonny.

Mary’s husband turned up and bashed her near to death and brave Jonny, upon hearing the news, fled the village.

Upon interrogating Mary, the village elders were told that Jonny claimed to be a kuria kee keeper who had asked Mary if she wanted his help to remove her husband’s other wives.

Mary, who had missed the cradle of her husband for many years, was much delighted and agreed to the plan. Jonny promised to bring the kuria kee to the house in the evening.

In the thick of darkness Jonny arrived at Mary’s house and whistled.

Mary exited the house with anticipation and, after walking in the direction of the whistle to receive the kuria kee, was told by Jonny that there was one more important ingredient he needed to add to the kuria kee recipe.

And that was some pubic hair from close to her genitalia which would speedily make the husband succumb to the plan.

Mary was a bit reluctant but said she would extract a plug of hair and give it to him later but Jonny said if she did it this way the power would not work. He would have to pull out a couple himself for maximum effect. She should quickly comply and lie down on the grass in the dark.

Mary fell for Jonny’s flattery and he made love to her and told her they would have to make love regularly.

At the funeral of Mary’s daughter, many women came forward and revealed that Jonny had also approached them but they were suspicious and declined.

There are many cases of abuse perpetrated by kuria kee keepers and some have led to the death of husbands and wives have been scourged and hanged for sanguma when found out by their relatives.

Polygamy and fragmented marriages are high in PNG and there is a huge demand for kuria kee keepers to ply their trade.

In cities like Port Moresby and Lae the keepers make good money, just like for a living by selling kuria kee to abandoned wives who want to win back their husband’s love just like the mothers who sell prayers door-to-door for cash.


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