Sheikh Mohammed Mutumba, an Imam who unknowingly wedded a fellow man, has been suspended from his religious profession at Kyampisi Village in Kayunga District in Central Uganda.
KanyiDaily had reported that Sheikh Mutumba got ‘happily’ married to Swabullah Nabukeera according to Islamic customs, without knowing the true gender of his new ‘wife’.
Mutumba and Nabukeera did not have any sexual intercourse before and after their wedding because the “wife” told him that she could not have sexual intimacy as “she” was “on her menstrual periods”.
Mutumba said he was not in a hurry to sexually know his wife, hence his patience for conjugal rights.
After two weeks of their union, police arrested ‘Nabukeera’ on theft allegations and during a body search by a female police officer before being taken to the cells, it was discovered that the suspect was actually a man.
During interrogation, the “wife” revealed to police that his real name is Richard Tumushabe.
Sheikh Mutumba, who was shocked over the discovery, has now been suspended as an Imam, and an investigations into the marriage has commenced.
According to regional Kadhi, Sheikh Abdul Noor Kakande, the move to suspend the 27-year-old Imam is aimed at preserving the integrity of the faith.
“He has been one of the three Imams of the mosque. He had spent about four years preaching in this mosque on top of teaching Islam to children,” Sheikh Busuulwa said.
He explained that although he attended Sheikh Mutumba’s wedding reception at his grandmother’s home in Kyampisi Trading Centre, the mosque leadership did not take part in the wedding preparations.
Mr Amisi Kibunga, the Kyampisi mosque bilal, said he saw Sheikh Mutumba’s ‘wife’ on two occasions at Juma prayers but said it was hard to discover that he was a man.
“He had a sweet soft voice and walked like a woman. She also always dressed in either gomesi or hijab,” Mr Kibunga explained.
“Four days after their wedding, the bridegroom came to me complaining that ‘her’ bride had refused to undress while they slept. Actually I was planning to go to their home to counsel ‘her’ when I heard that the bride had been arrested in connection with theft of a television set and clothes of their neighbour,” Mr Kibunga said.
Sheikh Mohammed Ssemambo, the chairperson of Namagabi Muslim County, expressed shock over the incident.
“I learnt about the incident. As a Muslim leader, he should have followed what the Koran says when one wants to get a spouse,” Sheikh Ssemambo said.
When this reporter visited Sheikh Mutumba’s rented home, neighbours said they had not seen him in four days. Sources said he had been taken by a relative for counselling.
“He is too devastated by the incident and needs counselling,” a source said.
“The ‘bride’ did all the house chores such as cooking, washing clothes and others while the husband was away but it was not easy to know he was just masquerading as a woman,” Mr Henry Mukwaya, a neighbour said.
“He always wore gomesi or hijab and spoke like a woman but she kept indoors most of the time,” he added.