Proverb of the week: Chicken that keeps scratching the dunghill will soon find the mother’s thigh bones.

Kata Kata

Admin | Posted On : 11-05-2022

Koklo ka koli dzi, eno fe atafu nue wokena do. (Ewe) Un poussin qui fouille trop les tas des déchets (d’une poubelle) finit par rencontrer les os de sa mère. (French) Kifaranga kichokoracho mlima (lundo) wa uchafu hukutana na mifupa ya mamae. (Swahili) Chicken that keeps scratching the dunghill will soon find the mother’s thigh bones. (English) Ewe (Ghana, Benin, Nigeria and Togo) Proverb This proverb which is very common amongst the Ewe tribe in Ghana and many other tribes in West African countries such as Nigeria, Togo and Benin, teaches the importance of peace and reconciliation. Generally, chickens often scratch the dunghill, searching for food. In most cases, the garbage contains many items, including old chicken bones. Those bones may remind the chickens of their fate and destiny. On the societal level, humanity is embroiled in a painful past, with tracks of throbbing and hurting history, which may shape one’s life, identity and future. As much as it is necessary to dig into the past for self-reflection and correction, one must be careful not to allow the past to act as an impediment to progress. A nation that forgets its past has no future, and those who cannot remember their history are bound to repeat old mistakes; we must draw a line where the quest for the past reaches. Trying to follow destructive past issues may reveal some painful history of our destiny - the thigh bone of the mother hen could be a reminder of our bitter fate, which may close a door to genuine reconciliation and peace. Therefore, as much as it is crucial to learn about the yesteryears, it is equally necessary to overlook some dark sides of history and look forward to a peaceful and better future. To achieve peaceful societal co-existence, we may need to ignore certain painful parts of the past and focus on the future. For many devastating and agonising years, Africa was the bedrock of Western slavery and gluttonous plundering of riches and a playing ground for western orchestrated instability, war and ethnic intolerance, which only benefited the West and kept Africa perpetually enslaved. We owe our children that they know the past, where the rain started beating us. The knowledge will help us learn how to prevent the rain from revisiting us. However, we must not dwell in the past if we want to achieve anything tangible in the future. Let the selective understanding of past mistakes be our learning experience so that the past can be a reflection or mirror and a stepping stone for a better future. Sitting down and only pointing an accusing finger does not help much. We must do more than digging into the past, and laying blames. We must learn from the historical events and take destiny into our hands; it is retrogressive to dwell in the past. Once Africans have learned this moral lesson and changed their mindset, peace, tranquillity and progress will follow. Let us not keep scratching the dunghill forever; otherwise, we will soon find our mother’s thigh bones, which may hinder our future progress.