“Sumaa Domm You Jigeen! Sumaa Jaamong! (My Daughters! My Jewel!)

By Amie Sillah

Sap
She came and found Yerro Maga sharpening his machete and she begged him for a favour.
“Can you kindly pick my palmnuts at the farm the bats and birds are spoiling them, I want to cook some and sell some for personal use.”
“Where is the money?” He asked his mother.
She laughed and said.
“I’ll pay you after you’re done O my lovely son.”
“You’ve asked me before and I said I’ll not do it, and then you promised to pay me which you never did.”
“Of course I’ll pay you after selling it and you’ll also eat from it when I cook the soup.”
“That’s what you’ve been saying and have never fulfilled your promise, this time you’ll never trick me again, money first before I work for you.” Yerro posited.
“But you’ll eat from it and I should not pay you for it; am I not your mother who has given birth to you? Have you paid me for that?”
“Did I ask you to give birth to me? You have given birth to me out of your own volition; I am now your responsibility who should be taken cared of as I would also take care of my own children if I give birth to them. What I need is my money and not plenty talk.”
The children are trained to be heartless, no empathy for their parents.
“Allah! What have I done to myself? What sort of monsters do I have as children? I am finished.” Sap lamented.

At the Ghetto
Lama hid the motorbike behind the ghetto and went in search of buyer for it.

Maga
He met two men who helped him find Lama’s hide out. Howsoon took him to the hideout.
“That is the place, he wanted to sell the motorbike to me but I refused because I suspected it to me stolen property; let me leave now before he finds out I show you the place.”
“Thank you my son, thank you for saving my motorbike.”
Cow Yerro followed Maga to the hideout.
Maga took his motorbike and rode home.

Cow Yerro
“Maga! Your boys will put you in hell fire as you are reaping what you have sown in these boys. Boy children! Boy children! What has boy children done for you? I am following you to your home; you have to pay for my money which your son owed me.”

Lama
He came back from his search for a buyer. He came with a courier who was to inspect the stuff to advise the buyer.
“Where is the motorbike? Here was where I placed it when I left.” He raved, ranted and insulted everyone but to no avail.

Howsoon
He is the courier for the prospective buyer he scolded Lama.
“Why were you so careless? You should not have kept it here in the open.”
“But this is our hideout and nobody has seen me keep it here.” Lama argued.
“But you have pist off boy you have pist off!”
He checked the ground and saw the traces of the bike’s wheel; he called Howsoon and showed him.
“Look at bike’s wheels traces, I am not lying you have to believe me.”

At Home
Jaabel asked.
“Where have you recovered your bike?”
“At the thieves’ dungeon, at the outskirts of the village where Lama sells Indian Hem, a man he wanted to sell the bike to who refused showed me the hideout.”
“I.J told me she saw Lama riding your bike; forgive him these boys are stubborn.”
“You call this stubborn? This is outright robbery!”
“Don’t say that about your son.” Jaa advised.
“Your son and not mine; a son who stole his father’s motorbike would one day stole my truck and sell my house on top of me.”
“They are still our sons, our children.”
“Jaa, Lama is no longer a child but a grandpa who robs, fathered a child and smokes Indian Hem.”
“Thank God your motorbike has been found.”
“Please tell my brother to give me a chain to save my motorbike.”

The Siblings
The girls came from school quite exhausted.
“I.J is not happy.” Tenneng explained.
“The sun is very hot and she may be very tired.”Magi explained.
“Is she the only one who has travelled through the hot sun? What about her younger sibling Tenneng?”
“The school has started registering and students paying for their WAEC; I did not register last year due to financial constrain I am also worried I might miss this year also.” I.J posited.
“Brighten up we will not fail this year, Allah will always find a way, your food is inside go and eat.” Jaa said.
“Mama! What do you cook today?” Tenneng asked.
“Nyankaatang (boiled rice) with palm oil.”
She protested.
“Why? Everyday ‘Nyankaatang’ day in day out I am tired of ‘Nyankaatang’!”
“What’s wrong with you?” I.J scolded her.
“If you are not hungry I am, I’ll finish it if you don’t come.”

The Parents
They are worried and don’t know what to do.

Jaa
“What am I going to do? If I cry my husband would say I am very emotional, if I laughed people would say I am stupid and idiotic and if I am quiet neighbours would say I am a useless mother; what should I do now?” Magi played his flute.

The Clan (Kabilo)
Cow Yerro invited the Kabilo to Maga’s house for a discussion concerning the debt owed to him by Yerro Maga.
Cow stated his complaint.
“Yerro Maga owed me money and refused to pay me as a result he ruined my business.”
Some family blamed him for naivety and complacence.
“Yerro has not come home for 2 weeks.” Maga explained.
“How much did Yerro owe you?” Alhajj Ensa asked.
“D7000. 00.”
“What!D7000.000? How could you have lend that jobless man such a kind of money?”
“Did I send him?” Maga asked Cow.
“Is that what you are saying? I did it because of you and had I not do it I would have been label cruel and mean.”
“It is your own business and I have nothing to do with it; I should have sued you for introducing my son to alcohol.” Maga argued.
Hamadi one of the cousins spoke.
“How could you sell liquor to a boy still leaving under his father’s roof?”
“Am I the Central Bank Governor or Bill Gates?I see you are targeting my motorcycle or my trunk to sell them and pay you, you are mistaken. “
“The debt has to be paid.” Hamadi posited and Cow concurred.
“But it has to be paid by the person who took it in the first place and not his father who can do it by choice and not compulsion.” Alhajj Ensa posited.
“O! Say it again my brother.” Maga concurred.
“Go and find Yerro Maga and ask him to pay your money, you cannot come here to intimidate me.” Maga posited.
“So that is what you’ll say, your family is a village terror but I cannot be intimidated by you or your family, you’ll see what I can do, I’ll be back.” Cow posited.
To be Cont.