YAR TSAKAR GIDA Complete Document Written By Maman Teddy


The clock struck 8:30 p.m. as she made her way slowly into the hallway, stealing glances at her daughter nestled in her arms. Her gaze fell upon the other women in the room, their attention fixed on the young girl, who wouldn’t even see her first birthday. Mr. Righteous Men, stepping forward, beckoned her into the House of the Strong, ready to accompany her. As the rain intensified, he raised his voice, forcing her to do the same to be heard over the downpour. She gestured to Hajiya, quickly making her way to the house’s entrance, saying, “Hajiya, we have arrived.” Taking a brief breath, she descended from the vehicle with her little girl and her veil, instructing him to wait for just two minutes before returning to the field with her. The sudden downpour hastened their entrance into the house.

Even within the shelter of the house’s hall, the sounds of the women resonated as if the rain had not touched the ground. Shaking her head, she held Amrah, a girl oblivious to life’s complexities, whispering, “God, protect Amrah from the evils lurking within this household.” Recollections of the chaos within the house, bustling with more than 70 people of all ages, flooded her mind. She embraced the little girl, her eyes brimming with hot, sorrowful tears. “I love you, Amrah, but I must let you go. This is Miki Dahir, and I’ll take her back to her family,” she said, walking swiftly through the courtyard and directly into the house’s midst. “Peace be upon you,” she greeted those present in Farfajiya.

Amidst the numerous women, one was toiling in the kitchen with no proper ceiling, the aroma of wood smoke permeating the air as if from a burning tire. Each one was occupied with their own tasks, seemingly unconcerned about their own well-being. Larai lit the lantern, whispering, “Innalillahi wa inna ilaihir raji’un” under her breath. Unable to contain her turmoil, she raised her voice, questioning, “Who is Hafsatu?” Stepping out of the kitchen, Friday retorted, “Who is Hafsatun, and who is that?” “You know Hafsatu after Dr. Hafsa,” she said before extinguishing the lantern. Jummai was crouched on the ground, cradling Kwankwaso, rebuking, “Oh, you’re back now, ending up where you’re going, Yar Zinan, trying to get involved with the deceased man who passed away seven years ago. You think she’s Auwalu? Oh, Hafsatu, fear God, Dr. Hafsa, and remember that God is One.”

The tension in the room escalated, Baba Zuwai interjecting with accusations against Hafsatu. Dr. Hafsa’s expression darkened as she muttered, “I need not reiterate the issue, as I have warned you from the start. But by God, Amrah does not have a father other than Auwal Baidu. La ilaha illallah…!!!” The voices of numerous women in the room merged, exclaiming, “Baidu, did you mention the name of your late husband after the one who fathered him?” Friday looked at Baba Zuwai and declared, “No, this is the curse of marrying a barrack boy. Every husband who marries a woman from Lagos is cursed. Evil and curses run through their veins. Leave, gather your belongings, and leave our home. We will change your appearance. You won’t even recognize yourself.”

Filled with resentment, Jummai gazed at Hafsatu, her voice laced with disdain, “You are a barrack woman, but our husband, may God grant him mercy, was an honorable man, a righteous soldier. You, on the other hand, married him and now he’s gone. You carried an illegitimate child for five years and now claim that he’s the father. Collect your things and leave this house… It’s Friday.” Holding back tears, Hafsatu retaliated, her voice echoing in the room, “This is Amrah’s house, and I didn’t come here without her. I found her here. Therefore, she is also a daughter of this house. I brought her here because she has no one else. Take care of Amrah and do as you wish with her.”

Baba Zuwai interjected, “Whose daughter are you bringing to Yar Zina to hold?” Jummai retorted, clutching her waist, “Well, since you’ve married a younger brother of Auwalu, who made you his wife, you must answer, as the truth will be revealed. We cannot turn a blind eye to the truth. We all know it.” All the women of the house converged, some stepping out upon hearing the commotion. Together, they demanded, “Who is she?”


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