Obinrin kò ṣe e jánípò si ìdí Àdìrò nikan, Obinrin ló ni gbogbo Ilé – Women cannot be relegated to the kitchen, women are in charge of the entire home

Ìtàn fi yé wa wi pé Yorùbá ka ọ̀rọ̀ obinrin si ni àṣà Yorùbá  bi ó ti ẹ jẹ wi pé obinrin ki jẹ Ọba nitori ni àṣà ilú, ọkunrin ló njẹ olóri.  Obinrin kò pọ̀ ni ipò agbára.  Àwọn ipò obinrin ni ‘Ìyáálé’, eyi jẹ́ iyàwó àgbà tàbi iyàwó àkọ́fẹ́ ninú ẹbí, pàtàki ni ilé o ni iyàwó púpọ̀ ṣùgbọ́n ọkùnrin ni ‘olóri ẹbí’.  Ipò obinrin kò pin si idi àdìrò àti inú ilé yókù gẹ́gẹ́ bi Olóri Òṣèlú Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari ti sọ.

Obinrin Yorùbá ti ni àyè lati ṣe iṣẹ́ ti pẹ́, bi ó ti ẹ̀ jẹ́ wi pé àwọn iṣẹ́ obinrin bi oúnjẹ ṣí ṣe, ẹní hí hun, aṣọ hí hun, aró ṣi ṣe, òwú gbi gbọ̀n, ọjà ti tà (ẹ̀kọ́ ọrọ̀ ajé díẹ̀), oúnjẹ sí sè àti itọ́jú ẹbi ni obinrin nṣe.  Àwọn ọkùnrin nṣe iṣẹ́ agbára bi iṣẹ́ ọdẹ, alágbẹ̀dẹ, àgbẹ̀ tàbi iṣẹ́ oko (iṣẹ́ fún ji jẹ àti mimu ẹbí).  Obinrin ni ògúná gbongbo ni oníṣòwò òkèèrè, eyi jẹ ki obinrin lè ni ọrọ̀ àti lati lè gba oyè ‘Ìyálóde’.  Fún àpẹrẹ, àwọn Ìyálóde ni ó njẹ Olóri ọjà ni gbogo ilẹ̀ Yorùbá àti alá-bójútó fún ọ̀rọ̀ obinrin.

Gẹ́gẹ́ bi àṣà ibilẹ̀ Yorùbá, àwọn ọkùnrin gbà ki iyàwó  wọn ṣe iṣẹ́ lati ran ẹbí lọ́wọ́, eyi lè jẹ́ nitori àwọn ọkùnrin ni iyàwó púpọ̀, nitori èyi, kò nira bi iyàwó kan tàbi méji bá lọ ṣòwò ni òkèèrè, àwọn iyàwó yókù yio bójú tó ilé.   Àṣà òkè-òkun fi fẹ́ iyàwó  kan àti ẹ̀sìn òkèère ti Yorùbá gbà ló sọ àdìrò di ipò fún obinrin àti “Alá-bọ́dó, Ìyàwóilé tàbi Oníṣẹ́-ilé” ti ó di iṣẹ́ obinrin.  Obinrin ayé òde òní kàwé, ṣùgbọ́n bi wọn kò ti ẹ kàwé, gbogbo ẹni ti ó bá ni làákàyè fún àṣà, kò gbọdọ̀ já obinrin si ipò kankan ni ilé nitori obinrin ló ni gbogbo ilé.

ENGLISH TRANSLATION

Historically women have always had a recognized voice in Yoruba culture even though they cannot be crowned as a King as it is a patriarchal society.  Their representation in terms of numerical strength in position of authority are very few.  The preferred leadership role for women are home based that is the older woman most often the most senior wife, particularly in a polygamous set up, takes on the leadership of the other wives and the children in the household, while the man still remains the head of the family.  However, the position of Yoruba women are not limited to the “kitchen, the living room and the other room” as stated by President of Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari.

Yoruba women had always been able to work even though the types of labour was along gender lines in occupations such as food processing, mat and clothes weaving, cloth dyeing, cotton spinning, trading (micro economics), cooking and caring for the family.  Men took on more skilled labour occupations such as hunting, blacksmith and farming (subsistence economy).  Women were the major figures in long distance trade with enormous opportunity to accumulate wealth and acquire title such as Iyalode (Women Leader).  For example, Iyalode have responsibility for all markets in Yoruba land in Western Nigeria. Additionally, they are traditionally in charge of women’s affairs.

Traditionally, Yoruba men did allow their wives to work to support the family but this could be largely due to the culture of marrying many wives hence there is no stress as there are other wives to take on the household chores if one or two are away on long distance trading.  The adoption of Western tradition of monogamy and imported religion has however had its effect on the idea of limiting women to the kitchen as ‘Housewife or Homemaker’ since they do not live in a communal live.  Nowadays, women are highly educated, even for women that are not educated, we as a culturally sensitive people, should not imply that our women are relegated to any particular place in the home, the whole house belongs to the women.

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