Jonathan Ngoma: Mombera University, The Memoir of a Kabaza Rider

Jun 18, 2021 | Blog | 12 comments

By Jonathan Ngoma

If you think every Kabaza rider you meet on the road is poor, then you are a fool. A misinformed fool. The worst kind of fool because your beliefs are based on ignorance. Maybe I should just speak for myself. I am not poor. My shabby looks, crudely cut shorts, and sweaty aroma should not mislead you. I smell like this because it’s the smell of hard work, the smell of money. When you see someone smelling like this, don’t hold your breath. Hold your hand, they will give you some, but I won’t, I hate beggars especially able-bodied beggars. Why do you beg people? Didn’t The Almighty give you strength and limbs to fend for yourself? I built that house next to Gogo Msukwa’s cantina because I didn’t give anything to beggars. Never give anything for free. That’s why I like to drink alone. I make sure I buy myself a bucket of Masese, a bottle of Little Lang, and some menthol cigarettes just to cool my breath. Then dance blissfully to Aleck Macheso as I point at the house I built with my sweat. Not all are pleased with my happiness. I am going to build another house this year. At first, I wanted to sell the bricks, but my wife insisted we erect another house. Yes!. I am a landlord. Those who don’t know me in this village have just moved here.

No wonder women love me!! Oh, they do!! They all know me. I am not a perpetual drunkard like their husbands. They are men with no knowledge of expenditure or a penchant for investment. I tell you, some of the so called poor people are just financially illiterate individuals. They only think of now and today instead of tomorrow and next year. Things like these make me very grateful for my grandfather. He was a Wise man despite the multiple wives, mistresses and heavy drinking. He taught me how to nurture money and circumnavigate women. I may not have inherited any material possessions from him, but he gave me priceless knowledge. Now, look at me, the talk of the village. I have only been here for some years, but I have been more successful than the ones who built it.

On top of that, I married a beautiful wife, Nyalongwe. Who in this village didn’t want to bed Nyalongwe? Every man with neat trousers or a shirt wanted her, including the village headman himself. But she chose me, Zondwayo. We have three daughters now: Tabitha, Atupele and Sphiwe. I love them all. However, marriage is tough. Nyalongwe nags me a lot. When I am late from work, I know that she will shout at me. It gets so lonely sometimes. Can you imagine sleeping next to a succubus? Feeling the smile on your face slowly turn into a persistent frown? To make matters worse, she turned my daughters against me. They, too, shout at me when their mother does. I feel like a toddler in my own house. I hope my new neighbors don’t know.

Nyalongwe accuses me of mingling of with other women. It’s all because of Nyabanda! She is the one who told Nyalongwe about us. Curse that woman! It was only once, I swear. Okay, maybe it was two or nine times. You see, in my line of work, women throw themselves at me. Ask any Kabaza rider, they will confirm it. From time to time, I also get offered the proverbial feline creature as payment. Honestly, some women just want to have a taste of this hardworking man. It starts with a complaint about their husbands, how their hubby doesn’t exercise his conjugal rights as often as he should.

So I wasn’t surprised when the recently arrived neighbor’s wife, Nyasoko, approached me. I was on my horse, my Raja bicycle, minding my business, and smelling like money. She wanted a Kabaza to carry her on her errand. I gladly picked her up. After casual pleasantries, I noticed something was amiss. She looked depressed.

‘Things are not fine, neighbor’, she said after I queried.’ My husband, Ajere, and I are going through a rough patch. We thought things would change after moving here, but it’s still hard. Our debts are piling up. We can’t afford to pay our debtors. But we desperately need food for the children and other basic necessities. As you can see, I am heading to a friend to look for money, but I don’t think I will find what I am looking for’. She masked her worries with a stoic laugh, but the distress in the tone of her voice was evident. I was curious. I could help her – in some way.

After further examination, she said she needed are K10, 000. I had the money on me, but I couldn’t hand out my hard-earned Njawala just like that. I don’t like lending either. Debts are a disruption, for I have no time for any potential loansharking. If she wanted money, I needed something in exchange. And I insisted on it.

‘Mmm..Ok’, for a moment she kept quiet, ‘I really need this money, but if that’s what it takes then I will do as you demand. I will meet you tomorrow morning, but I won’t spend a lot of time because I have chores’. I just nodded my head. She had reached her destination.

The next day I took her to my favorite place. In fact, I took all the women I tangled with to this place, Mombera University. That’s where I had all my vertical interactions. Although I didn’t finish school I knew every corner of Mombera University. I loved that place. I prayed the politicians never finished building it. It was my heaven and my bed of roses. I never thought the greed of politicians could make me so happy.

I stopped by the tall bushes just beside the bushy anthill. There was no one there. Not even the Ganja smoking boys who came to hide from the mighty Eagle of the law of the land. I felt at ease and anxious at the same time. Many gentlemen at the pub had been talking about Nyasoko. Beautiful alone couldn’t describe her. It needed other equally gratifying words to assist in order to pronounce her. She was an attractive woman. Nyasoko’s bums moved up and down like a piñata full of sweets set to be smacked. No man should enjoy such an art of creation alone under the guise of marriage. It’s selfishness. Every man should be given an opportunity to savor such an exceptional design.

By now, Nyasoko had undressed. She only did so after I gave her K5,000 in advance. The rest would be remunerated after I felt her warmth. I climbed on top of her like an explorer of a newly discovered peak. I was going to be the first man to relish the new comer’s gorgeous wife – an exploit worth bragging about next time when I am drunk. The piñata was in my hands and my stick was ready to crack it open. Suddenly, I felt a hand on my back. It yanked me to the ground. I was about to insert the tip in before I was aggressively interrupted. Who could be so cruel and inconsiderate?

‘What are you doing with my wife? Is this how you treat your fellow man? This is disrespectful! Get up now!’ It was Jere.

For a man with a lot of words I had nothing to say. I felt exposed and cornered like a thief. He confiscated my beloved bicycle. I could have fought him and run away but he didn’t come alone. They dragged me naked to the village headman’s court to be judged.

That was the worst day of my life. The village headman was not my friend. He was one of those people who begged beer and cigarettes from me. I felt isolated.

‘What happened?!’ asked the village headman. Jere stood up. The court was in session.

‘My chief, today I woke up in the morning. I got my catapult and went bird hunting in the bush at Mombera. To my surprise, I saw my wife enter the campus with this man, Zondwayo. I followed them to see what brought them there. I was disgusted to see him undressing my wife. So I rushed back and got people to help me confront him because he is a very strong man. All these people are my witnesses.’ said Jere while pointing at the angry faces behind him. His testimony was enough. The village head ordered me to pay k70,000 before sun set. I was devastated because I had no such amount of money so I sold all the bricks.

When I reached home the news of the bricks and my infidelity had already reached my household. My wife and daughters were not pleased. They stoned me and chased me out of my own compound. Those ungrateful rascals! Without me they are nothing.

It has been a week since the incident. A rumor has it that Jere and Nyasoko planned it so they could rob me. Either way, let the past be in the past.


  1. Charls

    You are a good writer zondwayo

    • Nthanga Junior

      This is awesome, a long story, but the thirsty is too much to keep reading.

      @mbombora University 🤣🤣🤣🔥🔥🔥🔥

      I hope Mr Politician will one day remember us.

  2. Timothy Nkhoma

    What a wonderful story

    • Jones Longwe

      So u have sold the bricks 🧱😂😂

      U hv communicated of the delay to finish mombera University in
      A dramatic way!! I like it 😂😂

  3. Chikondi Kandulu

    Oh wow creative

  4. Josh Mfitizalimba


  5. Mac Ian Yona

    This is very interesting fiction. Sounds real when you read.

  6. Gift Grace

    Very creative and funny,…. Ati “To my surprise, I saw my wife enter THE CAMPUS 😂

  7. Mphatso Scott Chambwinja

    Wow, nice piece of writing!

  8. Jonathan

    My name sake knows how to put words together. Master piece of a story

  9. kwawachi


  10. Dorathy

    An exploit worth bragging next time iam drunk
    My favorite line😊😅


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *