Bakoena Clan Names History and Origin

Bakoena is one of the main tribes that belong to the Kalanga clan and are found in Tonota village, some 13 kilometers southeast of Gaborone. They hold dear their totem–a crocodile.

Sometimes people would switch seboko, but only when absolutely necessary. This article will discuss:

Bakoena Clan Names

  1. Koena (or Kwena) – The name itself means “crocodile,” which is the totem of the clan.
  2. Motebang
  3. Matlakana
  4. Sehoai
  5. Tau
  6. Ramokgopa
  7. Segwagwa
  8. Mogopa
  9. Motlhabane
  10. Mothoagae

Bakoena Clan Origins

The Bakoena clan is widely revered in South Africa. They owe much to Kgabo (monkey), whom they came to revere following his help during Mfecane wars when it provided them with shelter from enemy pursuit at a river they couldn’t cross and built a tree-like makeshift bridge that enabled them to escape their pursuers and escape unharmed. Ever since, the Bakoena have venerated this animal as their totem.

The Bakoena are well known for their strength and never-say-die attitude. Furthermore, they’re an adaptable group who thrive in all environments – making them likened to the cunning hyena which symbolizes family closeness and mutual support. This similarity prompted people to compare them with each other as “hyena-like”.

Initially, the Bakoena were located in Ha Ramorakane in northern Botswana; however, today they can be more often found in Nqutu municipality area due to their split from Batlokwa ba Mphakane in 1977 over chieftaincy issues that saw Ramokgopa and Bogatsu part ways while other members moved south into Limpopo province.

Bakoena Clan Totems

Totems are essential symbols of clans as they symbolize certain values and traits. They can aid survival and protection. Totems might reflect either their spiritual connection to animals such as crocodiles, turtles or duikers – or simply be reflective of specific qualities in those species themselves; for instance a crocodile might represent stealthiness while another totem might symbolize patience or stealthiness – among many others.

Totems often take inspiration from historical events or legends; for instance, the Crocodile clan derives its name from an event in southern Africa where its member were used to defend against invaders. Clans and totems may also emerge based on characteristics attributed to certain animals like their ability to take care of itself and find food.

Clans often form through real or apparent inheritance. In North America, Hill-Tout suggests that animals were possibly names of groups before becoming totems; furthermore, totem names often mark boundaries where marriage was forbidden.

As in most cultures, killing and eating the flesh of totem animals are generally forbidden by tribal traditions. There are exceptions such as the Australian Aboriginals who publicly apologized to their totem before killing it and used ceremonial totemic meals to honor it as well as the Bangwaketse of Botswana who show their thanks by eating their totem animal to show gratitude.

Bakoena Clan Traditions

Crocodiles are the totem animal for the Bakwena tribe in Southern Africa and represent qualities like bravery and endurance – values which serve to unite and define them from other tribes in Southern Africa. That’s why it is vital that they uphold their traditions for continuity of identity and sense of community.

Basotho people are an extremely close-knit and family-oriented society. Oral history and tradition play a large part in their culture, such as through family or clan odes (liboko) or praise songs (litsomo). Books containing their oral culture provide valuable information about ancestry as well as beliefs and philosophy of these Basotho people.

Another tradition among the Bakwena is their belief in ghosts and spirits as reincarnations of dead ancestors, said to roam around their mountain settlement. This practice has become an integral part of their culture, helping them cope with hostile environments more successfully.

At present, the Bakwena live in Qwaqwa in Free State South Africa. Their King is Morenaemoholo Motebang Mopeli who was appointed after Thokoana died in 2018 – becoming leader of 43 chiefs as part of his BaKoena ba Mopeli clan membership originating with Paulus Mopeli as the younger brother of King Moshoeshoe I from Lesotho.

Bakoena Clan Customs

The Bakwena people consist of five distinct clan houses. Each house is led by its own leader and bears its own name due to feuds among clans that resulted in sections breaking off and taking on new leaders’ names as they joined their new clan houses, thus giving more autonomy over kingship matters and general affairs.

An individual’s Seboko (clan name) holds great cultural importance, enabling them to identify themselves by clan and know who they are as an individual. Additionally, its purpose is to prevent incest between members of various clans as members can quickly determine whether or not they share common bloodlines. Recited at the end of an introduction when meeting new people for the first time.

Bakwena clan members’ reverence for crocodiles has inspired their name; this animal represents stealth, patience and territorial behavior – traits reflected by values central to this clan. Yet exactly why they chose it as their totem is unknown; perhaps it has simply been part of their identity for some time; perhaps they’re connecting with it for other reasons altogether; regardless, this clan remains interesting and engaging.

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