Most times in the Western World here when you fill documents, there is always a section that ask which other languages you speak apart from. I use to fill in my native African language alone but recently it done on me actually that I speak another language which I now add as Africana English.
So funny, yeah! Yes it sounds so but leaving far from home, my country and my continent, makes me value this special language I grew up speaking. A special kind of coined English. One that differs from place to place in Africa. Africa’s coined English is spoken in most of the West African Countries and within a country there are different variation of it.
Of All the variations, none beats the version of my city Warri, popularly called Warfi. Can remember we all just grew speaking it, no one really can tell who coined the words originally. I remembered in those days, the eighties many from other cities and states in Nigeria did not understand us. Even in the nineties when we most of us attended higher institutions in different States of the federation then. It was always amazing to see how others looked at us as we communicated in this language.
I try to remember some words today, its funny to see everyone speaking or trying to speak this coined special English in Nigeria and in those of us in diaspora still do. Couldn’t help but laugh when I came across this video of this lady translating a preaching of the gospel in this coined English. The seriousness and all made me collapse, indeed she was on track.
Our we use some terms then was funny, some are real English words but Warfi English use and coin their meanings differently. Such effrontery one may say, it sure it but yet so perfect. Words like d following:
Words meaning Words Meaning
Fade disappear or go away shuoo an exclamation
Yawa trouble gbeghe trouble
Tafia to interfere okpeke girl
Amebo To tell tales Kpeme Died
Aproko To interfere kasala trouble
Tulee Run jeje quiet
maleeh Mum Hold ground To insist
Paleeh Father Tatafo tale bearer
Brekete To scatter Hold my side Be confident
oshofri free things
Waka to move/go
How time flies, did not realize how l am losing these words but had fun trying to catch up. Time for ups, if you know some of these special warri vocabulary, we are waiting for your contribution send them in through our comments section.
Send them in.