Stella Dimoko Korkus.com: Origin of Mammy Markets in Nigeria

Advertisement

Advertisement - Mobile In-Article

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Origin of Mammy Markets in Nigeria

It was in 1959. Mammy Ode, a young girl from Jericho-Ugboju in the present Otukpo Local Government Area of Benue State was married to Anthony Aboki Ochefu, a young Non-Commissioned military officer who had just been posted to Enugu from Abeokuta.


MAMMY

They were quartered at the Army Barracks, Abakpa, Enugu. To beat idleness and perhaps earn some money to support her young family, Mrs. Mammy Ochefu established a soft drinks business. She prepared gruel, which is called umu or enyi in Idoma, or kunu in Hausa, for sale to soldiers. She soon became popular with her stuff as soldiers trooped to her house to buy enyi. Some of her best customers were officers, who always sent their batmen to buy some of the gruel for them, Monday through Friday.



Somehow, one of the Non-Commissioned Officers, the RSM, did not flow with the enthusiasm, which Mammy’s gruel generated among other military men in the barracks. He complained that the stuff was attracting flies into the barracks and ordered Mrs. Mammy Ochefu to stop its production and sale. Though surprised and disappointed at the order of the RSM, she stopped the production and sale of enyi. Her husband, not being an officer at the time, could not challenge the order of the RSM.



For weeks, Mrs. Mammy Ochefu agonized over the fate of her business, just as officers and men of the Nigerian Army who enjoyed her enyi because of its freshness and nutritional value lamented the situation.



From several quarters, pressure mounted on the RSM for a reversal of the order. After a while, he succumbed to the pressures and directed that a section of the barracks be reserved for Mrs. Mammy Ochefu to produce and sell her enyi. Her joy knew no bounds.



Few days after, a section of the barracks was given to her. She built a small shop and soon, her business began to boom. Most of her customers booked for their shares in advance. Before noon, she would have finished selling the available enyi for the day. Soon, other women in the barracks tapped into her fortune and started selling other items. It was not long before that portion of the barracks became known as Mammy Market. It also became a policy to establish markets inside or near military barracks in the country, initially for the exclusive use of officers and men.



Today, no visit to Abuja, the Federal Capital City, is complete without a taste of fresh fish in one of the Mammy Markets, especially the one attached to Abacha Barracks. Similar markets attached to paramilitary barracks are also called Mammy Markets.



After the coup that overthrew General Yakubu Gowon, Anthony Aboki Ochefu, then a Colonel, was posted to East Central State as Military Governor. So Mrs. Mammy Ochefu and her husband returned to Enugu as the First Family; she sometimes visited the site where Mammy Market started about sixteen years earlier It must be stressed too that in retirement, Colonel Anthony Aboki Ochefu and his wife incorporated a company, Mammy Markets, which was into haulage and trading.



Mrs. Mammy Ochefu is alive and lives in Otukpo as one of the prized legends of our time."


from onlinenigeria:by Major General Kaleosho (Rtd),
Former Comdt TRADOC

 

92 comments:

  1. Wonderful. Just wondered how the name mammy markets came about

    ReplyDelete
  2. Interesting, Mammy will be very old by now. Hardworking woman






    God Bless Everyone.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. These are women who should be celebrated. Women who don't give up in the face of controversy. Women who are innovative and do something different In their lifetime.

      I'm glad I read this.

      Delete
  3. Wow. This is great. Never knew.

    Beautiful Mammy God bless you.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Wow wow wow im shouting here!

    ReplyDelete
  5. I enjoyed NYSC Mammy market days.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Wowwwww!she broke boundaries. Moral of the story don't wait for the government to do everything for you kapishh

    ReplyDelete
  7. Intelligentsia princess12 January 2017 at 11:12

    SDK, leave matter for Mathias
    The present day mammy market is
    Where should be renamed Sodom
    And Gomorrah, you need to see the
    Kind of atrocities going on there.
    Infact,we call it Ashewo headquarters in bk.
    Madam mammy inagesheki...dooo..

    ReplyDelete
  8. Wow! I never knew. Being a proud Benue woman and going to a paramilitary school.Good to know.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Boy!
    Did I enjoy this story? I love reading about history et al..
    Mammy market! I can't forget the grilled Crocker fish and fries in abacha barracks,A.Y.A, in a hurry.
    Madam mammy, I'm pretty sure your children and grandchildren are mighty proud of you..




    Dum Spiro spero.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are you sure we haven't met there? The crowd in Abacha barracks no be small. I guess I hate fish today because I ate too much at Abacha barracks. Plus that pepper sauce make sense no be small.

      Delete
    2. Lol @ are you sure we haven't met there? I tell you @sweet mother, that pepper sauce is everything.it took me a while, but I learnt how to prepare same.

      Delete
    3. AKA Mogadishu barracks.
      After the bomb attack there,several people got scared of going there.
      Thank God people feel safe enough now.

      Delete
    4. Are you sure we haven't met too. The first day I went to that abacha barracks I was like "this kind place dey this abuja" and my house no far from AYA.

      Delete
  10. That is awesome!!!! Thank you for bringing this beautiful piece of history Stella. Imagine the number of jobs people have because of Mammy? God bless you Madam.

    ReplyDelete
  11. WOW! I never knew! This is informative! Kudos to mammy!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wow we learn everyday, who would have thought mammy market was named after someone. Fantastic!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Ahh! Finally.

    I always wondered why camp markets are called 'Mammy' markets. Now I know.

    Thanks,Stellz.

    #WhiteDiamondOut

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Same here.
      I always wondered.

      What a nice read.

      Delete
    2. Wow am so happy to read dis story

      Delete
  14. Now,this is what I call being a star.

    My dear TGW,Nwanyi oma,I am fine,happy new year to you and family. May the year bring good tidings our way and our life continue to be more beautiful in Jesus name,Amen. I hope you and yours are good?
    Iphiee dearie,my regards and more beauty to our lives.
    My sweethearts on Sdk,I love you all and you all are in my prayers,la fresh,la Katie and so many of you there,I love you all.
    May our stars shine even brighter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen!!
      God bless you.
      I look forward to your comments here,i have learnt a lot from them too. You and Mystique.... Your love for God shows here.
      😘😘😘😘
      Regards

      Delete
    2. Sweetie!😍

      Amen to your Prayers.
      Hope you are good too Dearie.

      Delete
  15. Yes o! Another proud Idoma moment as a full blooded Idoma that I am,Idoma ol'adam eh! The Ochefu's are a popular family in Otukpo & i happen to know her family quite well especially her children.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Nice one
    I love history like this

    ReplyDelete
  17. Wonderful!
    I so much appreciate this history!

    ReplyDelete
  18. That's nice..l'v known the origin of mammy market.tnxxx Stella

    ReplyDelete
  19. Such an interesting read

    ReplyDelete
  20. Wonderful story....i knw of one mammy market in sea school apapa lagos because Ryla usually organised by rotary club takes place there....it is also a military arena

    ReplyDelete
  21. Wow wow, so dat is how mammy market come to existence.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Wow, there is actually a story behind mammy market

    ReplyDelete
  23. Very informative. Now I know.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Beautiful history. More of these kinds of stories pls SDK,thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Wow.. Power of doing what u know how to do best

    ReplyDelete
  26. I love such historic stories. Chai

    ReplyDelete
  27. Legends are being made from time immemorial.

    ReplyDelete
  28. It's at times like this I'm really proud to say I'm from otukpo.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Proud idoma πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘ Abole my people on SDK?

    ReplyDelete
  30. Very informative. God bless all industrious mothers worldwide.
    Thanks Stella.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Wow, She is a very enterprising and industrious woman.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Lovely, it's not too late for you to start that dream, you lead, others follow.

    ReplyDelete
  33. Oh nice, may we be remembered for good!!!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Wow, She is a very enterprising and industrious woman.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Are you kidding me?! Amazing article! Was waiting to read if she's still alive and voila! She is. People like this deserve to be celebrated. Their stories need to be told. God bless all those who have contributed immensely to this great country.

    ReplyDelete
  36. wow!!!!. the power of small beginning. God bless our hustles

    ReplyDelete
  37. So that name of the market was coined out of someone's name? How informative

    ReplyDelete
  38. Wow! Teach a girl child to be empowered and the nation will grow

    ReplyDelete
  39. Hmmm There is really history in every part of Nigeria..#uplifted

    ReplyDelete
  40. And I thought mammy meant mammy water during my NYSC.
    So that place I used to eat grilled croacker fish at abacha barracks was mammy market. Hmmmmm
    We learn everyday

    ReplyDelete
  41. Good to know how the name "mammy market" originated

    On the other hand, a name on this blog came to mind- Maami; the fairest and whitest of them all' & her tales of her son. What's that his name again? Hazard abi ki lo ru kor Γ¨? I hope she is doing good.

    ReplyDelete
  42. Wow! Now I know how mammy market came about. Thanks Stella

    ReplyDelete
  43. I had butterflies reading this.

    Loves it.

    ReplyDelete
  44. wow.thank u stella.i never knew.

    ReplyDelete
  45. what a great information. Wooow nothing ever exist in vacuum just as no writer writes in a vacuum

    ReplyDelete
  46. What a nice story, now I know where the name mammy market was curled from

    ReplyDelete
  47. Beautiful. I am going to mammy market today in abacha barrack because of this story.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Very informative, enlightening and entertaining.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Amaze ball. This history has a nostalgic feeling to it.*hands akimbo.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Wow! Good to know.

    ReplyDelete
  51. Wow! good to know. What about "mammy water?"

    ReplyDelete

Disclaimer: Comments And Opinions On Any Part Of This Website Are Opinions Of The Writers Or Anonymous Persons And They Do Not Represent The Opinions Of StellaDimokoKorkus.com

Pictures and culled stories posted on this site will be given due credit and is not the fault of StellaDimokoKorkus.com if website culled from misrepresents source of story.

If you have a complaint or a story,Please Contact StellaDimokoKorkus.com Via

Sdimokokorkus@gmail.com
Mobile Phone +4915210329280