Maale Tribe

Way of Life the Maale Tribe

The Maale tribe lives in an area called Malle Awaki. They are the second largest ethnic group in the south Omo zone. They are predominantly agriculturalists but those living at lower altitude practice mixed agriculture and produce several crops for consumption and trade. Livestock has less value to the Maale than the lowland pastoralists. The Malle tribe also hunts antelopes, wild boar, and other wildlife.

Their traditional leader is called Kati, who is also their spiritual leader. Maale society recognizes three inheritable noble ranks in the community: Kati, Goda, and Geto. The Geto serves as the spokesperson for the community. It’s the job of the Kati and Goda to act as judges in the community and to pray in times of difficulty such as drought or war.

Maale Tribe Marriage

The Maale tribe has three types of marriage:
•kubsina – arranged marriage
•sora – consensual marriage
•ardetin – marriage by inheritance

Marriage Ceremony of the Maale Tribe Ethiopia

Once the marriage has been agreed upon, the elders discuss the marriage payment and the wedding ceremony. The Maale tribe makes these payments in the form of money and in kind. The dowry is given to the girl’s mother and aunts. The mother is also given a blanket to signify her suffering in bringing up the girl. Aunts receive marriage payments in cash or in-kind (usually cattle).

Harvest Ritual of the Maale Tribe of Ethiopia

The Maale tribe does not eat ripe fruit or grain before the harvest ritual is performed. The ritual is performed at the family level. A senior member of the family is responsible for carrying out the ritual. The Maale has a small plot of land called Khashi-Goshi, which is used for sowing crops before other fields are. Thus, the crop on Khashi-Goshi ripens ahead of the crops on other plots. When the Khashi-Goshi crops ripen, family members come together and perform a ritual involving roasting the grain. Then the ritual leader loudly calls the names of their dead ancestors and gives them some of the roasted grain (scattering it on the ground). He then distributes the remaining grain to the families attending the ritual. From then on, everyone is free to eat from the new harvest.

About Author

Book authentic Omo Valley Tours with the best tour guide and operator in Ethiopia. Minalu Adem, the founder of Omo Valley Travel & Tours was born and raised in Jinka, South Omo Zone, SNNPR Ethiopia. Jinka is a small town in the middle of Omo Valley, Ethiopia. He worked as a local guide of Omo Valley from 1999 - to 2001 while attending his last three years of high school education. In 2002, he went to university and studied Business and Economics. Afterward, driven to return to his passion for working in tourism, he worked as a national tour guide for the top Ethiopian tour operators and outbound tour companies such as G Adventures.
In 2010, Minalu founded Omo Valley Travel & Tours, a local cultural tour operator outstretched from the Omo Valley of Southern Ethiopia. Working in partnership with local communities in Omo Valley, we provide responsible and enriching cultural tours such as Omo Valley Tours from Jinka, Omo Valley tours from Addis Ababa, Omo Valley tours from Arba Minch, Omo Valley photography tours, and Omo Valley tribes tours to Mursi, Hamar, Banna, Aari, Dassanech, Karo (Kara), Surma/ Suri, Nyangatom, Arbore and the other tribes of the South Omo Valley.
Minalu published his first book titled "A Guide to the Tribes, Omo Valley" in 2014. The second edition was published in 2017. Drawing on his experience and passion, he shared a lot of essential information about the history, traditions, and customs of the incredible Omo Valley region.

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