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Nigerian Cultures 6 weird traditions you probably never knew existed

Nigeria has got a good number of cultural practises such as witch hunting, female circumcision and a bunch of others which seem weird.

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Shaving the hair of an Igbo widow play

Shaving the hair of an Igbo widow


Every tribe and nation are bound by certain cultural practises and traditions and Nigeria is not an exception.

Certain tribes in the country, however, have what one can refer to as weird, strange and even outrageous traditions. Weird, because in this era, it just feels totally uncool to practise such things but of course, but totally normal and acceptable for inhabitants of those places where they are practised.

1. Magun

Yoruba dancers play

Yoruba dancers

(Niyi Tabiti)

Nigerian, like some other countries, have little or no tolerance for adultery.

Magun (Thunderbolt), a black magic which is commonly used by the Yorubas, is placed in a married woman without her being aware of it either by her husband or his family so that if she commits adultery, her lover could end up losing his life or getting stuck while in the act.

2. Widowhood

Shaving the hair of an Igbo widow play

Shaving the hair of an Igbo widow


This is common amongst the Igbos. A widow is subjected to humiliation to prove she has no hand in her husband’s death. All kinds of punishments are inflicted on her such as making her drink the water used in washing her husband’s corpse, shaving off her hair and the likes.

3. Witch hunting

Witch hunting in India play

Witch hunting in India

(The logical Indian)

This is a practice among the Edos. When a man or woman is suspected to either be a witch or a wizard due to strange occurrences or deaths in the family or community. Such person is taken to a witch doctor to undergo all kinds of torture to force the truth out of them and make them confess.

4. Sharo festival

Sharo festival play

Sharo festival


This is commonly practised among the Fulanis. It is done to prove that a young man has come of age and ready to take for himself a bride.

Sharo means flogging. The young man in question is continuously whipped by another, called a challenger, but he must show no signs of pain as this is to test his endurance level and his ability to persevere.

5. Female circumcision

A crying baby play

A crying baby

(Getty image)

This scary tribe is generally practised in Africa. Unlike the male circumcision which involves partial or complete removal of the foreskin around the genitals, the female circumcision involves total removal of the genitals just to preserve the woman's chastity. Thanks to education and media, this practice is actually reduced in the country.

6. Fattening room

The fattening room play

The fattening room


This is practised by the Calabars. The fattening room is a room where young women are kept and prepared for womanhood. In times past, being fat is equivalent to being prosperous and all. That's what this room is basically about.

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