y children never felt out of place in their schools because they are known by their native names. To my delight, they are so proud, moreso, knowing the meaning behind the names. Dumebi for one usually insists on the correct pronunciation. After all, if they can call Zuckerberg what is tongue twisting in “Dumebi”. While some parents and children celebrate this uniqueness, others think it isn’t posh to be identified by their native/African name. Wonderful!!!!

It is music to my ears when I hear people being addressed by their native names.

Likewise, it’s almost a form of prejudice to think that an ethnic name could be a source of setback and denied opportunity. Although, the bias in society has created a loophole for marginalization due to ethnicity and origin. However, succumbing to the perceived norm is tantamount to selling ones’ birthright for a pot of porridge.

Moreover, God has the final say, and what will be, inevitably will.


Your name is your Identity. It is who you are. Be aware of the meaning of your name, especially a non-native one!!!

In my case I was baptized Gertrude by my Catholic parents despite my mother not knowing the meaning. Interestingly, a name specifically chosen because as a teenager, she liked a girl called so. Finally, I discovered the meaning of Gertrude in my first year at FUTA. The meaning “strength” resonates with me hence I continued to use it. I made a resolution then to change the trend with my kids. Native name must be the first name, end off.

Reverse the trend

Luckily, my husband shares “the native name” enactment with me. Hence, it’s native name all the way for our children; both at home and publicly. Above all, my father-in-law invested in very wonderful and endearing names.
Uzochukwu—-the door that God has opened, no man can close
Chukwudumebi—-God lives within me
Awelechukwu—–the one who comes with the ease of God, or ease of God is upon me


1 I see the pride of being part of a bigger picture and ethnic identity native name gives my children.




They have even come to respect their root even more.




3They are happy and grateful we made that decision for them.




4The endorsement of the “Africanism” culture came when Dumebi and mates organised an African day in her school.



5 Coloma school felt the impact, with glee and poise the girls interpreted who they are via drama, speech and dance.

I am doing my bit to promote my tradition and custom. We should be proud of who we are, there is no-one else like you, so, be YOU!!!!