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blogof the week

What would you expect from a blog written in Nigerian Pidgin? Humour bordering on silliness, perhaps. This is why the workings of Jonas Dogara’s mind, his mastery of Nigerian Pidgin and his deep interest in social change coupled with his frank acknowledgement of Nigeria’s many challenges, are a wonder to behold. Not Freshly Squeezed is a pidgin blog set up, as it states, “to exercise that thing wey dey between my ears”. However, it does much more than that. This blogger has a knack for presenting serious issues in the most interesting ways. Take the highly popular post, “No Be All Calabar Girls”, for instance. The title had readers all geared up, anticipating a titillating story. You soon realise there is none forthcoming, but that doesn’t stop you from reading. Even when you figure out he is addressing the fundamental issue of stereotypes amongst Nigerians, you can’t help but read to the very last line, and then ponder on his charge- “The time to dump these stereotypes and prejudices and move forward na now. Make that change.” With other posts, like “Why You No Suppose Marry” and “Make We Yarn”, the blog does not waver from its goal- to get you thinking. For instance, on the ridiculous three-ring circus that is the typical Nigerian “Wedding” (registry wedding, followed by the traditional wedding, and finally the church wedding), he writes in “Three for the Price of One”; “For we society where people like to show off and prove say dem pass their neighbour, things done pass be careful. E dey put young people and families under pressure to spend money wey dem no suppose spend. Some dey spend everything dem get. Others dey even borrow. For what? To marry the same person three times and invite the whole world?  E done reach time wey we suppose begin use some common sense for this issue. Nothing stop us from finding correct ways to merge our ceremonies and remove things wey we no need. We need to know say to marry one person plenty times and blow cash no dey guarantee successful marriage. Also, the wedding ceremony no be investment and e no dey bring ‘profit’. Na new life just dey start. And for this new life, couples go still need to chop, pay bills and take care of many other responsibilities.” Once you get started, it won’t take you long to find out Jonas is a Nigerian man from Port Harcourt, primarily because it reflects in his dialect of Nigerian Pidgin, and in the experiences he relates on his blog. His passion to see a better Nigeria, and better Nigerians, is also immediately noticeable. As he relates what he sees, hears and thinks as he goes through life, he calls on fellow Nigerians to think over the issues that keep us down, and to come together to find a practicable way forward. He also makes it clear that he wants an interactive blog, and is very interested in your comments and contributions. Yes, in many ways, Not Freshly Squeezed is a town hall meeting, and the discussions here concern each one of us. Do attend. Check it out!…Need it? Search it, Find it!

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This article was first published on 23rd May 2013 and updated on August 10th, 2013 at 8:56 pm


Joy Ehonwa is an editor and a writer who is passionate about relationships and personal development. She runs Pinpoint Creatives, a proofreading, editing, transcription and ghostwriting service. Email: pinpointcreatives [at]

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