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Monthly Archives: March 2011

On Muammar Gaddafi and Libya

The issue in Libya is gaining so much steam now and is being covered everywhere. Well here is our facebook discussion on the matter. After watching the clip below, a few people had something to say.

Bones opines:

He speaks the truth you know

Aero Max says:

this is a non bias truth in a transparent form… i subscribe to this all the way, those people lack nothing, if nigerianz enjoys half of what libyans are enjoying from their goverment, i am very sure non of us will complain even if they stay for the whole generation.. the funny thing is that even at its worst .we are not doing anything about it.. who gives a damn about DEMOCRACY ? when it cannot deliver basic amenities. ALL we need is A Government that can deliver to its people what their basic needs are. who cares if it is AUTOCRACY or WHATEVER.

Willy says:

Aero I am damn with u…If Nigeria a democratic country where the government is been change every four or five years they dont enjoy up to half of wht the Libyans are enjoying in their country,then they call Gaddafi tyrant. Equatorial Guinea,formerly Spanish Guinea.In that country they make money from oil just like in Kuwaite, the population there is not up to one million,they dont have hospitals there,no good schools,last week my friend that went there on an ong works say they weren’t there eggs to buy.their president Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo assumed office 3 august 1979,I am sure the Eu and United States dont know that country exists,but they buy oil from them.

Hans:

I mean what is this business of America to the world? This country is going through a lot already. This man is a man of truth. I sometimes get buttered by his words, because at one point I fall into it. Why is Obama allowing these people to push him. Obama should be smart enough to know to get this statement that Hillary Clinton said and I coauthor ” I will not be a secretary of state any more if Obama wins”. now you are invading Libya, what for? I was saying on buni the other time that, the people of Libya are very stupid… and I will say it blank here, Qaddafi is trying to unit the whole of Africa and he is moving in the right direction. And this is a treat to the western world. When the conference was held in Ghana, almost a common conclusion came into agreement, until ivory coast opted to send a concern letter to it’s allied to before they could do something. What happened? Aint they into tribal war over governance? Until when shall the black man learn. But I am telling you, this is all a aim at Saudi Arabia…but if America wants, they should try and see… it’s very sad… but God is our helper… Long Live Africa, Long live Ghana.

Buni says:

HANS, I started nodding my head while reading your post and I continued nodding it till I reached a certain point. Please Sir, how is Ghadaffi trying to unite all Africa and how is that a threat to the Western world? This man has been in power for 42 years and has not united anything. Now that his overthrow is imminent, you tell me he is trying to unite the world?

Buni says:

AEROMAXX, I agree with you. It began an argument yesterday where I told them that it is better for your country to return to military rule. It seems the other side of the fence (civilians) are not better either.

Read the rest of this entry

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Of Ethnic Chauvinism In Nigerian Circles

(A Fashionable Restaurant and Bar in Lagos. As usual, Nigerians of different ethnic groups are present. They are having a discussion in between copious servings of Peppersoup, Amala, Isiewu, and other Nigerian dishes, and of course lots of beer)

(Yoruba man): I just broke up with my girl. She is Igbo, and so, I cannot date her any longer or marry her. Igbo women are ridiculously expensive and high maintenance. They are too materialistic and stubborn. Besides when you eventually marry her, you are also marrying her entire family! For what? It is not like there is anything special about them!

(Igbo woman): Shut up! Who the hell are you? This is why I won’t even consider marrying a Yoruba man. Yoruba men are notoriously unfaithful in relationships. They can cheat on their wives with their wives’ sisters. They leave the entire job of running a family to their wives because they are like cowardly little boys who never want to grow up or accept responsibilities!

(Yoruba woman): Go to hell! See how you are flapping your gums here? May Sango bend that your neck for you! How about your Igbo men—are they any better? Igbo men are uneducated market touts; unsophisticated greedy traders. They are too bossy; too controlling and unromantic. Why would any woman want to date or marry a caveman? That is why whenever they think their girlfriends or wives are doing better than they are financially, they go insane and KILL them. Abegi jare!

(Igbo man): May Amadioha dislocate your jaw there, you ugly woman. You have the mouth to come here and rain insults on Igbo men. What about you Yoruba women? The truth is that Yoruba women have poor personal hygiene. Yes I said it—you Yoruba women are dirty compared to the rest of Nigerian women. Besides, you are rude, loud and uncultured market-women. No wonder your Yoruba men are always running after Igbo women. It is not uncommon to see a Yoruba man being chased around by his crazy pestle-wielding Yoruba girlfriend or wife. Your cooking is horrible—you are just like bush women. Go and tame your men—those little player wannabes! But maybe this is futile. Look around Lagos. All these Sisi Eko prostitutes you see around are Yoruba women.

(Edo man): Haba, why are you Igbo and Yoruba people always at each other’s throats all the time? You Igbo and Yoruba people are the two biggest tribalists we have in Nigeria. The day the two of you will learn to get along in Nigeria, maybe the better Nigeria will become. Anyway, I am an Edo/Bini guy. We are the best. We are smooth, rugged and handsome. And Igbo and Yoruba women like us.

(Efik man): You Bini guys are irresponsible serial cheats. You Edo people are just juju-minded irresponsible cowards, and your women are a dime-a-dozen sluts in Europe! Comot for here abegi!

(Edo woman): Come Akpan, so you get liver to talk abi? Why would anyone want to date or marry an Efik woman anyway? They are good for nothing except to be housemaids. And even at that, they are terrible housemaids because they always want to open their legs for the Oga. Are all Efik women bred by their mamas to be little whores? As for you dog-eating Efik men, what else can I say other than that you guys talk funny and you never amount to anything more than blue collar workers and apprentices?

(Hausa man): Wallahi, I am keeping out of this discussion.

(Everyone laughing): If you like don’t keep out now. It doesn’t mean that no one will talk about you backwards Northerners.”

(Ijaw woman): Mallam, is it true that you Hausa men have long gbolas because you people are not usually circumcised? I am just curious.

(Hausa man): Shege, if you want to know, come and find out.

(Itsekiri man): Baba eleran, why you dey vex? I hope this crazy man no go dagger us here o. You know how emotionally unstable and violent Hausa people generally are. Now, why would anyone want to date or marry a Hausa man?

(Idoma woman): You will have to ask a Hausa female to get that answer because Hausa men rarely marry non-hausa or non-muslims. And when I say “Hausa female”, I mean little 11 or 12 year old Hausa girls because as we all know, our friends to the Core north are like little pedophilic deviants drawn to the tender undeveloped bodies of barely teenage girls.

(Urhobo man): Woman, abeg let us talk about the over-18 Hausa girls. I don’t like this ugly visual of an uncircumcized Hausa man with a very long joystick ravaging an 11 year old girl. Don’t make me throw up into my fufu and egusi soup. I think I like Hausa women—they are nice, gentle, loving, conservative, chaste and will not cheat on you. It helps that many of them did not go to school.

(Tiv man): Urhobo wayo! Chai—forget that thing. We middle-belters know and understand the Hausa people more than you Southerners. I have messed with many Hausa women before now. Forget the veils and the scarves—hausa women are very freaky. Behind all that modest and conservative apparel are crazy sexual tigresses. They are just very good pretenders. In public they act like angels, but when you get to know them better, you will find out they are scheming, cruel witches. They deserve their barbarian men I swear. I call them ‘slow poison’.

(Hausa man): Mutum banza, banza barawo, Shege! Allah punish you idiots! Why are you people so hateful of Hausa people? See all the yeye things you are saying about us. I no blame una. Na ignorance and bigotry dey worry una. Madam, give me my bill make I comot here!

(Everyone starts talking at once; some rebuking the Hausa man, others are laughing hysterically. The exchanges continue…)

————————————————————————————-

As you can see from the exchanges above, many Nigerians harbor deep and often negative stereotypes of each other based on ethnicity. In many cases, these prejudices even color the way a Nigerian of one ethnic group might interact with a Nigerian of another ethnic group. It is not surprising to hear about prospective marriages that were annulled because the parents of one of the couple refused to have any extended or family dealings with their son’s or daughter’s love or marriage interest simply because said love/marriage interest hails from a different ethnic group. The same blinkered mindset shapes the choice of partners in business dealings, political affiliation, friendship or social circle etc. This ethnocentrism—sad, ignorant and regrettable—is a cancer that has eaten deep into the hearts and minds of many Nigerians.

Even sadder is the fact that the younger generation has absorbed the xenophobic inclinations of their elders. In a time like this when technology, travel, education and exposure are reputedly breaking boundaries between formerly separated peoples and making nonsense of tightly-held tribal prejudices, it is rather painful to find many members of the younger generation afflicted with these unflattering misgivings about Nigerians of an ethnic group different from theirs.

I have noticed that when you try to talk to many of these latently xenophobic Nigerians, they’ll quickly deny any tribalism on their part. As a matter of fact, if you allow such a person to explain why he or she feels such reprehensible ill-will about others, you will often discover that a great number of such persons have no immediate or direct personal anecdote to draw from. You will be usually regaled with the stories or suspicions passed down to them from their friends or elders. In some cases, you may have some who might have had a genuine negative experience at the hands of a few members of the targeted ethnic group. But what sense does it make to use the unfavorable impression created by one or a few members of one ethnic group to negatively tar the rest? These unfortunate generalizations reflect poorly on those who employ them because it marks such people out as being too fatuous to understand the wide ranging complexities of human nature and behavior.

For example, by the most conservative estimate possible, there are more than 20 million Yoruba people in the world. The same can be said about the Igbo and the Hausa. If there are respectively more than 20 million of each, you can already see that by European standards, each of these ethnic groups is more than qualified, by a strict game of numbers, to be regarded not as mere tribes (as one might simplistically reference some forlorn primitive hunter-gatherer society in some remote corner of Africa) but properly as individual nations. If that be the case, how can one harbor such uncharitable generalized assessments of the members of  another ethnic group when in reality one has never even met and interacted extensively with as little as 1% of that ethnic group? And if one were to stick to such persuasions, contrary to logic and basic decency, how can such a person stand excused of accusations of ethnic bigotry or tribalism?

Why then do people continue to prevent or at least discourage their friends and relatives from dating and marrying people of other ethnic groups? Would it not be better if people hearkened to the wisdom inherent in judging other people individually according to the content of their character and not as one might have originally suspected based on nothing but ethnic origins?

Earthquake In Japan

By now, you would have heard about the earthquake that has devastated Japan.  A massive 8.9 earthquake followed by a massive tsunami has hit Japan leaving over a thousand people dead and wreaking billions of dollars worth of damage. This natural disaster has caused tsunami warnings to be issued in surrounding areas like Hawaii and the entire west coast of the United States.

Our hearts and prayers go out to the Japanese people at this trying time.

 

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Nwa Baby

There is a popular Igbo Nigerian song on YouTube by Flavour N’Abania. It is called Nwa Baby. Anybody who has been listening to the increasingly amazing dance-worthy beats that are now emerging from Nigeria on a constant basis would not fail to have heard this particular song. Now, a lot of what Flavor and his friends were saying on the track were in the Igbo language, and while that has not stopped a lot of non-Igbo listeners from appreciating the song, I felt compelled to give a full translation of this song to English for the benefit of those who might be wondering exactly what was being said.

In this fairly detailed translation that you are about to read, I’ll attempt to translate the lyrics of this song as they should be understood in the best context—it is not just going to be a shoddy, simple, word-for-word translation. I’ll try as much as I can (granted that I am not Flavour himself who can improve on this), to explain what the song is saying.

The words of the song will be rendered in bold font after which I’ll give an underlined direct translation where necessary. Then, in brackets, I’ll explain it in detail.

Don’t you wish someone would do the same for all those other songs you are inconspicuously drawn to even though you know not the meaning of the words?

Flavour – Nwababy


(MC announces and introduces Flavor N’abania): Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you the rave of the moment: FLAVOUR N’ABANIA!!

(applause as music begins in presumably a party scene)

(1st voice) Alcohol

(2nd voice) look, look, wait, mba—alhohol {the second voice on the track is suggesting a more fanciful frat-boy, beer-parlor or college lingo when he objects to the word ‘alcohol’ and substitutes ‘alhohol’}

(3rd voice says jokingly) Olingo…Olingo gbukwe ghu =freebies—perish with freebies! {this voice playfully chides the 2nd voice for wanting freebies as buddies would normally do when they are in a group}

Flavour picks up here, addressing some gorgeous babe in this party scene that caught his eye…

(7 times) Nwababy…nye m ife gi = Baby girl…give me that which you have {Here, Flavour drops a masterful pun—a masterful play on words by using the term “nye m ife gi” which indicates he wants something from the girl he is addressing but the phrase is safe enough as to be understood in a multitude of contexts. He could be asking for her attention, for a dance with her, for her smile, for her beauty, etc. As the song progresses, it becomes gradually clear that he wants her body; he wants to make love to her}

Nwababy..nye m ife gi. Okwa n’abania = Baby girl.. give me that which you have. This very night.

I don hammer no be small, now it’s time to chop money {I have hit the jackpot/I have made it big/I am rich now and so now it is the time to spend some money}

Somebody say “N’abania, na-atakwanu ife umu nwanyi a” {Will someone holler “Tonight, ladies you can eat anything you want”. Flavour is trying to make it rain at the party obviously, so he is indicating that the ladies present can eat and drink at his expense}

See dem girls dem plenty = I see a lot of girls here {since this party scene is probably crawling with a lot of college-type babes of the Nigerian variety,  of which many have the reputation of trading sexual favors for money, good grades, elite company etc, Flavour wastes no time teasing out this fact. In a most playful and complimentary fashion, he acknowledges the fact that the girl he is addressing is a hustler of some sort}

Waka Waka baby…oh yeah {this suggests that the girl is always walking from one guy’s house to the other}

Wuru wuru baby….oh yeah {this suggest that the girl is tricky or crafty}

I go tell my mama…oh yeah =I’ll tell my mother

I go tell my papa..oh yeah = I’ll tell my father

And I go tell am say:you be waka waka baby..oh yeah =I’ll tell ‘em that you are a walkabout babe or a streetwalker

You be wuru wuru baby…oh yeah =I’ll tell ‘em you are a tricky or crafty babe

Corner corner baby…oh yeah; Sango sango baby..oh yeah; Para rara baby..oh yeah {“Corner corner baby” expresses the fact that the girl in question is always found in dimly lit corners and alleys. This highly suggests that the girl might be a call-girl. Here, and as you will see in the rest of the song, Flavour employs a lot of onomatopoeia; he says words which individually have no meaning save to express a heightened degree of excitement brought about by this party babe to whom his words are directed}

Oh baby sawa lee..sawa sawa sawa lee (2ce)… ASHAWO {the word “sawa’ or ‘sawam’ indicates the act of walking, or movement of the feet as in a dance. Here, Flavor is indicating that the girl in question is light-footed—walking around easily from place to place or of nimble gait. He concludes that she may be a call-girl with the word Ashawo}

Kpomkpotom kpomkpom; kporokotom kpomkpom; ikpomkpotom kpomkpom; kporokotom kpomkpom; kpakolokpa kpakolokpa kpakolokpa kpomkpom; ojarikpoko, ukwu nwa baby, achukurege kpomkpom {Here Flavour goes off the chain. Not finding words to adequately convey the height of his excitement, he lapses into a series of onomatopoeic renditions designed to communicate the supposed elegance of a seductively dressed temptress of a woman. These sounds are supposed to communicate the rippling movements of the girl’s body as she walks or perhaps dances—breasts bobbing up and down; her buttocks jiggling as she walked or danced; the movement of her thighs; the swaying of her hips in movement etc}

Ashawo Awosha Awosha Ashawo Ashawo Awosha kpomkpom {the word Ashawo means call-girl or an escort. To differentiate a call-girl from a prostitute or a whore (akwuna), a call girl’s client makes an appointment usually by telephone. They (call-girls) are not usually randomly picked from street corners like prostitutes. A call-girl may be gainfully employed or may be in school, and then renders her sexual services discreetly to her clients in exchange for money or some other material incentives. Here, Flavour twists the word Ashawo around artistically by saying Awosha. The effect was to remove some of the negative sting or punch from the word}

Eh—Eh—Eh—Eh—Eh—Eh kpomkpom {Yes—Yes—Yes—Yes—Yes—Yes. Clearly, if the girl he was addressing his song to was dancing or walking, Flavour appreciates the spectacle in front of him. He recognizes the silky sophistication of this Babygirl (Nwababy) even though he likens her charm to that of a call-girl’s.

And the baby sawa lele eh..sawa sawa sawa lee (2ce)…ASHAWO = And this baby is light-footed or nimble with her gait(2ce) as to be regarded a CALL-GIRL.

Flavor addresses his fans, the general audience and his colleagues at this point…

To all my fans in the house n’abania = To all my fans in the house this night…

(dropping names): Flavour Shelters, Alamieyeseigha, Zubby, Akwei Soldier, Ogbuefi Nnanyelugo, (O gini di=Oh, what the hell), Ma Holla, Beauty  I na-eli eli (Beauty, I see you wining and dining), Nze na Swiss (You, my titled influential man in Switzerland—an affectionate way of saying that his friend is so rich he has a Swiss account), Omaliyo, Honorable Prince Sunny Nwogbo, Sir Vic Obiekwe, Sisko Dogado….

(7 times): Nwababy…nye m ife gi = Babygirl…give me that which you have.

Na soso waka I come dey go; Anywhere I go a na-ata ife {I have been going to a lot of places recently; anywhere I go, people are feasting/partying/wining and dining}

All my guys where una dey?; From here to Salon Hotel {My Pals, where are you guys? From here to Salon Hotel}

[scroll up to see the hook]

Di anyi imakwa ebe a tunyere m? = Yo dude, do you know where I was just dispatched to?

(In closing and with Flavour making another sexual remark)

Ala di n’udi n’udi….ala, ala di n’udi n’udi…ala (2ce) = Breasts come in different varieties

Ala ma mma, were aka gi jide ya..ala =when you see perky breasts, reach out and touch them

Ala ma mma, were onu gi michaa ya ..ala = when you see succulent breasts, go ahead and suck them.

 

The End.

I hope that translation helped you on some level.

By the way, if Flavour N’abania ever gets to see this modest attempt at sharing  this great song of his with many non-Igbo speakers, and feels compelled to correct my translation of his work, the revised one from Flavor will be accepted wholeheartedly and with all humility – after all, who better than the genius himself can say in his own words what exactly he was trying to communicate?

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