A wedding may last only a day, but it means so much to the sisters, even more so these days than in the past.
I mean, we never borrowed money to finance weddings a decade ago. Those of us whose marriages failed are at least not regretting having over pimped our gowns and other décor. But the lengths to which the sisters go these days to have a glamorous wedding are simply amazing.
We are currently commiserating with a sister who is cooling off in the cells, having picked money that was not hers from a client’s account in the bank where she worked, in order to finance her wedding. Kampala media last weekend described how the petite cashier from an international bank branch in the suburbs helped herself to over fifty thousand dollars from a customer’s account as budget support to her wedding preparations.
A fifty-thousand-dollar wedding in any country is a lavish wedding, and this bank teller decided she needed one of that level. To get the picture, the most expensive wedding for four hundred guests at a five start Kampala hotel on the water front of Lake Victoria costs twenty-five thousand dollars for everything except the bridal clothes and the cameras, and it comes with a couple of days in the bridal suite.
So the little bank teller decided she needed twice that. But even then she felt it was not enough and a few days to the wedding, she helped herself to another ten thousand dollars from the same account, having worked out a way to get the money with the help of an accomplice.
But even the richest man notices if sixty thousand dollars goes missing from his account. He complained to the bank and the theft had been so amateurish that the suspect was nabbed immediately. So for her honeymoon, the little teller was sent to prison.
But don’t shrug this off as the recklessness of youth. In the main city prison, she found a woman two or three times her age who was just settling in, also after splurging a fortune on her wedding. This tired mama’s husband had gotten his retirement package several months earlier and between them – we don’t know whose idea it was – they decided to use the bulk of the money on the wedding they never had since they had started living together decades earlier and gone ahead to get all the children until they got finished wherever they come from.
Anyway, they blew the retirement package on the wedding, and continued living like they were on honeymoon. By the time the money got finished, which was not to long afterwards, they had been hooked to the lifestyle. But looking creditworthy, they started borrowing to keep up the standard of living.
Kampala’s moneylenders usually have no time to waste on defaulters. The lady had been the one signing for the loans. She was sent to prison a few weeks earlier, before the bank teller. Woman’s desire for a grand wedding seems to know no bounds!