Mursis Women (Omo Valley, Ethiopia)
The Mursi are a Nilotic pastoralist ethnic group in Ethiopia., close to the border with South Sudan. According to the 2007 national census, there are 7,500 Mursi. The Mursi undergo various rites of passage, educational or disciplinary processes. Lip plates are a well known aspect of the Mursi and Surma, who are probably the last groups in Africa amongst whom it is still the norm for women to wear large pottery or wooden discs, or ‘plates,’ in their lower lips. Girls' lips are pierced at the age of 15 or 16. Occasionally lip plates are worn to a dance by unmarried women, and increasingly they are worn to attract tourists in order to earn some extra money. . I took this picture during a journey organised by BUSKA TOURS, Addis-Ababa.