Post Image

The Burkanawa People

The Burkanawa are also referred to as the Barke people. They are a group which is adopting the culture and lifestyle of the dominant Hausa-Fulani. In other words, they are a blend or an emerging group of the Hausa and Fulani merging process. They are dominant people in northern Nigeria. As that process continues, the Burkanawa people may lose their own language and culture and adopt folk Islam like the Hausa-Fulani. As regarding their location, the Burkanawa are majorly found in Darazo Local Government Area of Bauchi State in the northeastern region of Nigeria.

The Socio-economic Characteristics 

Illiteracy is high among the Burkanawa people of Nigeria. Most still live in rural communities and farm the land surrounding the village. This is due to the fact that basic educational facilities and infrastructure, as well as the other basic social amenities are lacking. Like most people groups in rural Nigeria, the Burkanawa enjoy music, story-telling and dance as a form of entertainment and communication. These art forms are very meaningful and important to the Burkanawa people. It is also a very common way for innovators and missionary groups to reach out to them. The Burkanawa or Barke are an agricultural people and they are heavily dependent on agriculture as their source of livelihood. As an agrarian community, it is common to see the cultivation of crops like yams, rice, maize, beans, millet, and melons. They also raise goats and cattle for their meat, milk and hides. Chickens provide eggs and meat. Where there are communal disputes and conflicts, it is the responsibility of the Village elders to settle legal disputes and deal with any issues that pertains to outsiders.

The Religious Inclinations and Beliefs 

The Burkanawa people adhere to a mixture of Islam and folk religion religion. They depend on the spirit world for their daily needs even though they may call themselves Muslims. The Burkanawa often use charms and amulets in an attempt to control spiritual forces. They believe that spirits inhabit the objects of nature such as animals, trees, rock, mountains, rivers, and the sky. The evil spirits must be appeased or they can bring disaster upon the community. The Burkanawa live in fear of these evil spirits.

Overview of Darazo Local Government Area

Darazo Local Government Area is located in Darazo town, as the area council consists towns and communities of Darazo, Gabarin, Gabayari, Konkiyal, Lago, Lanzai, Papa, Sade, Tauya, Wahu and Yautare. Darazo local government area is one of the local government areas in Bauchi state Nigeria. It has its administrative headquarters situated in Darazo town. It was created in 1991 and Zumbun language serves as their dominant language. The Darazo local government occupies the eastern part of Bauchi state and it shares boundaries with Dambam local government area in the north and Misau local government area in the northwest and Ganjuwa in the southwest. Reference Missiongrid Featured Image Source: Joshua Project
Got a suggestion? Contact us: editor at connectnigeria dot com

You might also like:
This article was first published on 25th August 2020


Jeremiah is a scholar and a poet. He has a keen eye for studying the world and is passionate about people. He tweets at @jeremiahaluwong.

Comments (1233)

1,233 thoughts on “Ethnic Groups In Nigeria: The Burkanawa People”