Paying dowry is a sin – Rev Timothy Njoya

Retired PCEA minister Reverend Timothy Njoya has garnered a reputation for his fearless approach to addressing societal issues and his unwavering convictions. Recently, in an interview with Standard Entertainment, the 82-year-old Njoya shared his perspective on the commercialization of the dowry process in contemporary times and its transformation over the years.

The theologian firmly expressed his belief that paying dowry is a practice he cannot endorse, as it leads to a troubling perception of women as property. Njoya passionately argued against this tradition, asserting that it is sinful to purchase a person through dowry payment. He questioned why men are not subjected to similar practices, highlighting the inherent inequality in the dowry system. In his view, dowry is not a reflection of African culture but rather an expression of cruelty. He shared a personal anecdote about his mother’s rejection of dowry from his paternal grandfather, further emphasizing his stance against it. To Njoya, women should never be treated as commodities to be bought or sold.

Reflecting on his parenting journey, Njoya expressed pride in his children’s accomplishments, particularly their attainment of Ph.D. degrees. He attributed their success to their own merits and intelligence, underscoring the importance of fostering an environment grounded in human rights and democracy. Njoya mentioned his daughter Wanjiru’s outstanding achievement in securing a first-class law degree and a Commonwealth scholarship to study in Britain as a testament to their family’s commitment to education and excellence.

Njoya humorously described his family as a collective of experts, given their diverse academic backgrounds. He mentioned that when they come together, it feels like a parliamentary debate, as they engage in intellectual discussions stemming from their various disciplines.

On his 82nd birthday, Njoya expressed optimism about his longevity, citing his family’s genetic predisposition for long life. He mentioned that his grandfather lived to be 110, his mother reached 104 years, and one of his aunts recently passed away at the age of 139. With such strong genes and a healthy lifestyle, including regular exercise routines like rope skipping, walking, and sit-ups, alongside a well-balanced diet, Njoya believes he has the potential to surpass the age of 139 and remain healthy for many years to come. He shared his optimism about the future with a hearty laugh, reflecting his positive outlook on life.