Zimbabwe: The Ectrodactyly {Two(2)-toed} Vadoma Community.

(Two-toed) community in Zimbabwe.

Zimbabwe and the Vadoma tribe

The people of Vadoma or Doma which is also known as Dema, are perceived as a mystical tribe living in the Kanyemba region in the north Zimbabwe.  These people are also seen as Ostrich tribe with rare two-toed population. A good number of the people are said to be in the Urungwe and Sipolilo districts which is around Mwazamutanda River. The Mwanzamutanda River is a tributary of Zambezi River Valley.  The people of Vadoma are also known as the bantwana tribe. They are the only traditional hunter-gatherers indigenous to Zimbabwe and famous for the inherited ectrodactyly existing among some Vadoma families.

In the Vadoma community, there are many who can’t wear shoes due to the shape of their feet. They have their feet like that of the Ostrich. They have two big toes on each foot. They don’t have middle foot and the two outer ones are turned in. Even with these, it didn’t disable them from walking or carrying out their daily activities though some difficulties are experienced due to shape; therefore running becomes very difficult for them. Even with the condition of their feet, it enables them in climbing trees.

(Two-toed) community in Zimbabwe.

Photo credited to Wikipedia

The elders of the Vadoma people claim that their remote ancestors were bird like beings who came from the stars and mixed their DNA with early earth women to produce offspring. It is said that their ancient ancestors came from the star systems of Sirius and first established colonies on the planet within our solar system that they refer to as LIITOLAFISI. There are also some persistent rumors’ that the Vadoma people are capable of disappearing in the forest and performing magic. There is a primary and secondary school and a clinic provided for the Vadoma people, but their intense trust in their own ways of life has prevented them from using these facilities. In fact, the land that they live on is also very rich and can be used for farming, but only if they learnt to use the right skills and equipment. The Future and development of the people Vadoma seems bleak because of their dislike and resistance to change.

Zimbabwe and the Vadoma tribe

Their leader who is identified as Chief Chapoto who lives in mountains and surviving primarily on a nomadic lifestyle of hunting, fishing, honey hunting etc.  Their system of survival which was thought to be hunting has recently been redefined and seen a poaching (Illegal procurement of protected wildlife such as fish ECT.) since they were not license to hunt. This has also pose threats and criticism on the people of Vadoma. The people are stereotyped with the names ‘Stone Age cave-dwellers’ and are given only but a little access to fertile land because of their own resistance. They are considered to be Zimbabwe’s only non-agricultural society.

It is also perceived that the Vadoma people are quite shy by nature; while chatting or talking with them, they don’t look you to the eye but instead, stare at the ground. They feel this inferiority-complex that’s the reason they are often harassed by game rangers and hence run away from people. They also don’t like wearing textile fabrics; in fact, children as young as 10years old don’t wear any clothing. They have changed their lifestyle to semi-foragers as they have kept little contact with the rest of their community. They use wooden platforms and have shelters with thatching which they built to protect them from the weather and predators.

 

My father took advantage of me.

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