According to the Ganda Oral Tradition, Ggulu, King of the Heavens had many children. Of them all, the great tale of Kintu only mentions about four. Nnambi, his daughter and three sons; Kaikuzu the oldest (Digger of holes), Lubale (Bringer of thunder) and Walumbe (Death), the most chaotic, notorious and cunning.

Also read The Tale of Kintu: The First Ganda King.

A lot transpired between Kintu and the brothers of Nnambi but the most significant occurrences in the Ganda Oral tradition happened after Kintu and Nnambi left for earth to start a life outside the watchful eye of Ggulu, Nnambi’s father.

kintu and nambi painting

Kintu and Nambi Painting by Gloria Ssali

See when Kintu finally completed the “impossible the great tasks”, Ggulu reluctantly allowed him to get married to and Nnambi. But because Kintu decided he wanted to go back to earth, Ggulu after a lot of reservations let him go. On condition, the departure had to be immediate and secret lest Nambi’s chaotic and cunny brother Walumbe should find out and insist on going with his sister to earth where Ggulu worried he would cause Kintu, Nnambi and the earthly beings a lot of pain and death.

These are the accounts of  Walumbe’s Fallout with Kintu and Nnambi.

Soon after Kintu and Nnambi married. Along with Kintu’s Cow and its calves, Ggulu gave them a sheep, a goat, a chicken, a plantain tree and seeds for every edible plant. To take along with them on their long journey down to earth.

Hurry now to Earth,” Ggulu commanded. “You must leave before your brother Walumbe returns. He will want to travel with you to Earth, and if he sees you, he will go along with you. ” Kintu and Nnambi began their journey, but halfway home, Nnambi said, “Dear Kintu, I have forgotten millet grain for the chicken. I must return to the sky. I will hurry.” Regardless of Kintu’s persuasion and reminder of her father’s warning, and Off she ran.

Kintu and Nambi

Kintu and Nambi Painting by Gloria Ssali

As Nnambi was collecting grain from the fields of the sky, Her father Ggulu found her and inquired as to why she had returned. “I told you not to return,” he scolded. And beckoned her to be on her way before her brother returns from the fields.

Also read Kintu and Nnambi: A Ganda love story from Uganda.

Ashamed, Nnambi turned to leave. As she was hurriedly descending to meet with Kintu so that they can continue their journey to earth, Walumbe saw her. Needless to say, he inquired where she was going all by herself. “I am coming with you,” he told his sister.

She tried to lie to her brother and even told him their father was looking for him urgently. As he headed back to meet with his father, his canny thoughts wouldn’t let him be. So he decided to secretly follow Nnambi to find out what she was up to.

Upon meeting up with Kintu. Walumbe came out of hiding and would not be convinced otherwise. And so together they travelled to Earth. There Nambi planted her garden with seeds and plantain trees. She and Kintu lived together happily, and she gave birth to many children.

Or So they did?!!!

Also Read The Tale of Kintu, the Fairy Bee and The Great Tasks

Upon arrival to earth, Walumbe made a pack with the couple that he would not bother them as long as they promised to give him one of their offsprings. Kintu, was reluctant to agree with this plan since the great hunter was not fond of Walumbe but Nnambi eager to have Walumbe out of their lives convinced Kintu to agree to the pact and Walumbe for years did not trouble them. But Walumbe is Death, and Death cannot be avoided forever.

It did not take long for Kintu and Nambi to get children. One day, Walumbe went to Kintu’s home and asked his brother-in-law to give him a child to help him with the chores in his house. But remembering Gulu’s warning, Kintu would not hear of it.
Walumbe became very angry with Kintu for refusing him the simple favour he had asked. That very night, he went and killed Kintu’s son. Naturally, this caused a deep rift between them. Kintu went back to heaven to report Walumbe’s actions to Gulu. Gulu rebuked Kintu, reminding him of the original warning he had disregarded. Kintu blamed Nambi for returning to get the millet. Gulu then sent another of his sons, Kayikuuzi, to go back to earth with Kintu and try to persuade Walumbe to return to heaven or if necessary return him by force.

Read The Tale of Walumbe, Lubaale, Kayiikuzi and the great Tanda Hole for more about Walumbe’s Fallout with Kintu and Nnambi.