Traditional Occupation of the Arewa People

The Traditional Occupation of the Arewa People

The Hausa people who live in northern Nigeria are also known as the Arewa people, and they are the largest ethnic group in Africa, with the exception of religion, where they are mostly dedicated believers in Islam especially the Sunni branch of the religion, we the Hausa's are very unique in almost anything.

In Sub Saharan Africa, the Hausa tribe and language are spoken frequently and fluently, it is very difficult to find a town or village in the sub-region where there is not at least one person that can speak hausa, it is believed to be the most widely spoken language in Africa, very numerous tribes have transformed in to the Hausa tribe and are no longer able to even recall their original identity, talk more of  their local language. They're some that are not hausa tribe but can speak hausa fluently. So, in this article today i will be discussing about the traditional occupation of the Arewa People.

In Arewa, some people work in markets where you can find all sorts of things you want. There's a place for selling meat, clothes, shoes, jewelry, and other food items. Every morning, the shop owners open their businesses, and people come to buy what they need. It is like a lively community where everyone gets what they are looking for, making the market an essential part of daily life in Arewa. But in old days both male and female put what the are selling in a local tray and then go to the market and sat in one queue to sell them, they will be calling out what they are selling for customers to come and buy.

Also along with the drummers and singers, every occupation has its own traditional leader. Its standards and values differ from those of other occupations, and it also has its own particular occupational style. Also in arewa there are some jobs that are inherited, like barbing, if your father is a wanzan you will end up as one too. There are many different jobs that are inherited in arewa.

The Traditional Occupation of the Arewa People

1. Barber as (Wanzan in Hausa)

As we all know a barber is a person whose occupation is mainly to cut, dress, and shave hair or beards, and a barber's place of work is known as a barbershop or salon or let say male saloon since its for male. While in Arewa a typical Wanzan is always seen carrying his bag, called Zabira, in which his sharp blade- like knife is stored alongside items like his cup, a piece of soap, charcoal and other herbs with some other secret items which he wants to keep for the difficulty day. He is a traditional healer, medicine man, and also a circumciser. He will use his blade to cut the hairs and style your beards the way you want it, in some cases he will entirely cut the whole hairs which we call Talkobo or Twatwali in hausa.

2. Butcher 

In Arewa we call a butcher Mauhauci or Fawa. A butcher is a person who slaughter animals, dress their flesh, and sell their meat, butcher may be employed by supermarkets, grocery stores, butcher shops, slaughter houses, or may be self-employed. Also during Eid adha times they will put their equipment in a bag and be going to different houses to slaughter their animals and get paid. But most of them have small place for selling meat and tsire with a table and sitting places for their customers most expecially in the night, one fact about them is that they put the meat or tsire they are selling only in a brown paper, when ever they don't have it they most look for it before starting to work.

3. Farming 

Farming is a very common job in the whole world but its hards for some people because one must learn how to do everythingin it , as farming is the growing crops and keeping animals for food and raw materials. Farming is a major part of agriculture. Arewa People was known for the production of agricultural products like Cotton, Guinea corn, Groundnut, maize, beans, wheat, tomatoes, onions, watermelon, cucumber, soya bean, etc. 

4. Trading

In Arewa, a trading shop is a local store where people buy and sell everyday items such as Maggi, milk, Omo, and other household essentials. These shops are like small neighborhood markets, providing a convenient place for community members to access basic necessities without having to travel to larger stores or supermarkets.The owners of these trading shops, often entrepreneurs or local business owners, play a vital role in meeting the daily needs of the community. Customers rely on these shops for items that are part of their routine, creating a sense of convenience and accessibility within the neighborhood.

Read Also:

Different Types Of Old Traditional Houses In Arewa (With Pictures)

The Traditional Settlements of the People in Arewa

5. Street Hawking 

Hawking is the random sale of goods in public places. By doing so, one is creating more market for his or her product. It involves providing goods while moving from one location to another and convincing people to buy them. Street hawking is a major source of income for many families in Arewa. So in Arewa street hawking was traditionally the distribution of goods for sale by going from house to house. 

The 'Baban bola' and 'Mai kwalabe', for example, moved from house to house, practicing barter trade. 'Mai Alewa' and 'Mai Maganin Gargajiya' later transferred sweets for money. These hawkers passed by houses chanting, singing, and playing instruments in order to attract indoor customers to come out and exchange or buy their goods.

Talla is a general term in Hausa for 'advertisement,' which is used by both formal and informal businesses in northern Nigeria to advertise their products. At the same time, it is used to describe the hawking action. 'Yan Talla' sells almost anything, from tootbrushs, beads, toys etc. 

6. Dyeing

Dyeing is the process of applying dyes or pigments to textile materials such as fibers, yarns, and fabrics in order to achieve the desired color quickness. Dyeing is usually done in a special solution containing dyes and other chemicals. The dyers create the dye solution with only three natural ingredients: Indigo plant twigs, ash from burned wood, and potash made fresh at the dye pits. All of the ingredients and equipment used are obtained and developed locally.

 In Arewa, dyeing took place in both Zaria and Kano. Only the well-known Kofar Mata dyeing pits of Kano have survived and are now a tourist attraction. The Kofar Mata pits, founded in 1498, are said to be the oldest in Africa and the only survivor of Kano's dye trade, which once included 13 pit complexes. Its colors have adorned the fabrics of Kano's traditional rulers for centuries, and it is located close to the city's central mosque and Ganuwa at the same time along the emir's palace road


7. Leather Work

Castle production is popular in Arewa. So because of that, skin production is also popular in the region. Hides and skin are important export products of the north. Leather is produced from hides and skin. It is produced from the skin of cow, Goat, and snake etc. Leather is produced through the process of tanning. As leather crafting, or leathercraft, is the practice of shaping or coloring leather to create craft objects or works of art.

Northern Nigeria has long been known for its leather, going back to the 18th century. Some of these leathers have ended up as the finished product of high-end brands such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Ralph Lauren, and Fendi. The majority of these hides are turned into suede and then exported to factories in Tuscany, Northern Italy, where the material is further processed and sold to luxury bag and shoe companies

For more information


Our WhatsApp group link

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post