A Ksh350, 000 budget, a guest list of 42 people, a Ksh40, 000 wedding gown, a simple church setting at Kenyatta University, and a partner she has known for close to ten years now are all it took for Dr Purity Ngina to add the title wife to her profile.
Dr Purity Ngina tied the knot with the love of her life, Germano Mugambi, on Friday, February 22.
The academician, who earned her Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree in Biomathematics from Strathmore University last year July, says she is not impressed by the colour, razzmatazz, and flamboyance that have – for long – characterised urban weddings in Kenya.
She says Ksh350, 000 was “just enough” to hold the ceremony, including using a part of that money to visit her elderly grandmother in Nyeri.
“My partner and I did not want to bother people with harambees, neither did we want to hold a big wedding in a bid to show off. Growing up, I was taught to live according to my means. Of course, we could afford a more expensive ceremony, but again, I am fully cognizant of a future that lies ahead of us. Life doesn’t start and stop on wedding day,” Dr Ngina told EDAILY.
“With the budget of Ksh350, 000, Ksh123, 000 went to food, which we bought at Safari Park Hotel. That was enough to feed the 42 people, who attended our nuptials. My wedding gown cost Ksh40, 000; and I thought that that was quite much, given I am used to wearing mtumba clothes,” said Dr Ngina.
She says the motivation behind her “small” wedding was the fact that “only few people genuinely care about your welfare”.
“I did not want other people to contribute to our wedding, then once they leave the wedding venue, you’d hear some of them say: ‘Kama si sisi, huyo kijana hangepata bibi’. Above all, we are a young couple, and there is much life and responsibilities ahead of us. We could as well spend big on our wedding day, and scratch our heads in our house, thereafter, wondering where we’d get money to take care of ourselves.
“Weddings don’t just happen, they are planned. All the while, I knew one day I would walk down the aisle. So, I had allocated a part of my salary toward my wedding kitty; and by the time, we were tying the knot, I had accumulated enough to hold the ceremony. My husband also brought in his contribution,” said Dr Purity Ngina.
The lecturer at Strathmore University says her husband had lost his mother on January 22, and they were just coming from laying her to rest, when the wedding materialised.
“That also explains why we opted for an intimate ceremony. We had just buried my partner’s mother on January 29, which is three weeks ago; and you know funerals in Kenya are quite an expensive affair. So, we had to settle for a low-budget event,” said Dr Purity Ngina.
Her church wedding to Mr Mugambi was officiated by three Catholic priests.
The newlyweds, thereafter, led their guests to Safari Park Hotel for a reception ceremony.
“I just want to tell young couples that it is okay to have a low-budget wedding. What matters are values and morals – they should guide the process. It makes no moral sense to hold a Ksh5 million wedding on money founded on fraud or illegal acquisition.
“As for me, I had a nice [wedding] gown, a lovely wedding ring, and now a husband. I am happy and satisfied,” said the newlywed.
Dr Ngina and Mr Mugambi first met in 2009 while studying at Egerton University in Njoro, Nakuru County.
They would lose touch after graduating from the institution in 2013.
The two would meet three years later in Germany, where they had both gone to study. Dr Ngina was on a six-month study scheme as part of her PhD programme while Mr Mugambi was pursuing his Master’s Degree in Electrical Engineering.
“I was new in Germany [in 2016], and he was the one who showed me around, paid for my hostel and taught me how to survive in the European nation. We, thereafter, grew closer and ended up dating,” said Dr Ngina.
After six months in Germany, Dr Ngina returned to Kenya. Her husband completed his studies and returned to the country a few months later. Their relationship continued to blossom, culminating in a wedding on February 22, 2019.
The couple says they did not plan for a honeymoon, and their post-wedding plot was that they visit Dr Ngina’s 100-year-old grandmother in Nyeri County.
“That was the best gift we could give our elderly grandmum. She couldn’t travel to Nairobi and be faced by the buzz and stress that the city subjects one to. She was happy to eat the cake we took to her,” said Dr Purity Ngina.
Her husband, an electrical engineer, works as a lecturer at Egerton University.
Dr Ngina’s story hit media headlines in July last year, when she became one of Kenya’s youngest PhD holders at the then-age of 28.
The lady, who hails from Mbiriri Village, Kieni East in Nyeri County, currently teaches Calculus to students pursuing Actuarial Science, Financial Engineering, and Financial Economics at Strathmore University.
[PHOTOS | EDAILY]