This chiefdom traces its origin to an elephant hunter named Kekelay Kaba, who is said to have come from Mali in the 16th century with his wife Fatmata Jabbi and son Keleh Kaba. When he arrived, he met the Lokos already living there. The next day, he went to the hills and killed a big elephant, which he brought to town and shared with the village. He is said to have greeted them with the word “maraba” in his language. This was mispronounced as marampa, whichgave the chiefdom its name. Kekelay’s descendants comprise the chiefdoms of the family today. Again, however, it is unclear whether this relation between the households has been constructed as a myth to unite the families. Another story consistent with the evidence is that Kekelay was a Mane invader who established himself as chief of the area, ruling through alimamis as described in Wylie (1977). The families today, trace the lineage of these alimamis, who may or may not have been descendants of Kekelay. Wylie (1977, pg. 134) notes that the chieftaincy of Marampa was relatively stable throughout the 18th and 19th centuries.

 The present chief is Bai Koblo Queen Kabia. The chief is a man, but his family took the name Queen from Queen Victoria. He was elected in 2002. The chief during the war, Alie Koblo Queen Kabia II, to whom the current chief is related, was elected in 1986, but was dethroned by the NPRC 1992, only to be reinstated in 2002. It is likely that this dethronement had something to do with the fact that Marampa is the site of a particularly important iron ore mine, run today by the London Mining corporation. The mine, however, has been active since it was developed by the Development Corporation of Sierra Leone in 1933. The headquarters of the chiefdom is in Lunsar.

Gbamathie This family traces its origins to the first son of Kekelay, who succeed him.

Pathbana This house traces the lineage of a second son of Kekelay who ruled after Gbamathaie.

Sankolo This house traces the lineage of a third son of Kekelay, who ruled after Pathbana.

Kegbelay This house traces the lineage of a fourth son of Kekelay, who ruled after Sankolo.

Queen This ruling house traces its lineage to a family member of the Gbamathie family. It is said that when a member of this family won, he was chose the name Queen for his house, as Queen Victoria was crowned on that same day, May 24, 1819.

Kennedy This family also traces its lineage to the Gbamathie family, but also connections in Tonkolili.

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Total Population(TBD)
Male Population(TBD)
Female Population(TBD)
Data Sources
Population Data: Statistics Sierra Leone website -
Chiefdom Description:
Photos: Google Search for photos with the name of the chiefdom