GIPIR AND LABONGO: THE STORY CONTINUES
By Our Reporter
Yesterday, we stopped just when Labongo had ventured into the forest and it continues. See, the more he penetrated deeper into it, the more his legs sustained sores that frustrated his movements. Before long, the sore turned into a serious sickness that threatened to swamp the little life he had left. He was stuck in there for weeks with no one to help him.
When it seemed like it was the end of the road for his battle to keep alive, a miracle happened. An old kind woman to whom the forest was home came to his rescue. Day after day, she nursed him till he was able to get up on his own.
Thanks to the reinforcement by this Samaritan, he was able arise on his feet and track the elephant with guidance from the Samaritan woman. Happily, he eventually found it lying dead in the middle of the forest. Upon return, Labongo awaited a ripe opportunity for revenge. His wait wasn’t in vain. One day, one of his royal beads was picked and swallowed by one of Labongo’s daughters.
“He couldn’t be happier demanding for the bead like his whole life depended on it.” Gipir’s cry to make it up to him didn’t yield fruit. There was only one way out. He was to slit his child’s stomach open, killing her, after which he was to pick bead. It was a painful sacrifice as the victim was his favourite child.
Wang-Lei is born
A defeated Gipir, afraid that the worst awaited if he stayed with his brother decided it was time to go their separate ways. In this regard, they buried an axe at the spot where the present day Wang lei is; just a few meters from Pakwach bridge-opposite the former railway quarters. Wang lei, is basically the axe
Gipir would go on to migrate with his family to the present day Great West Nile region and some parts of Congo, Labongo headed to Northern Uganda. “Since the split, never in history has anyone from the Labong lineage successfully crossed this bridge. To be specific, anyone with ill motives against the people of West Nile,” Jalobo Omulemezi, a spiritualist at the site who has lived in Pakwach for the last 48years says.
He explains that when the warrior priestess Alice Lakwena and her troops attempted to cross over it in the Mid-1980s-so as to terrorize West Nile fraternity, over 30 of her troops mysteriously fell off the bridge and drowned, never for their bodies to be recovered.
Similarly when the Lord’s Resistance Army Rebels who followed suit in late 1980’s, they also lost several of their troops mysteriously, never to be found again.
Hardly has a year ever gone by without someone drowning at the bridge. Though no convincing answer has been found to this question, Omulemezi suspects that these victims were possibly up to mischief when crossing the bridge, no more!