Culture Trip | The Koma People
A recently rediscovered tribe in Nigeria are the Koma People. While they still live in an era that most refer to as the dark ages, here are some quick and interesting facts about them.
- The Koma people can be found around the Atlantika Mountain in Adamawa State. ‘Alantika’ in Kanuri language means Allah hasn’t arrived yet.
- They were discovered by a youth corper after hiding in plain sight for a long time.
- They share a border with Southern Cameroon.
- There are 21 Koma villages on the Cameroonian side of the Mountain and 17 on the Nigerian side.
- All the settlements have different languages but with similar dialects.
- They are divided into three main groups: the hill-dwelling Beya and Ndamti, and the Vomni lowlanders.
- Sometimes they are referred to as ‘The Ancient Naked people of Nigeria’.
- They can be said to boast of about 50,000 people.
- The Koma people are as primitive as it gets. Most of their ancient cultures and traditions are still upheld till date.
- The men wear loin cloths and the women cover up with leaves.It is believed that if a woman wears clothes and the gods will either kill her or make her barren.
- Like in ancient Calabar, twins are an abomination and both mother and children are taken outside the village and buried alive.
- When a guy reaches puberty, they are circumcised while for the girls they have their upper incisor teeth extracted. Those who succeed at hiding their pain throughout are hailed as victors and a pride to their families.
- The language spoken is ‘Koma’ and they generally make a living from hunting, farming and trading.
- Missionaries have made their way there trying to develop the area. They have dug boreholes and tried to build schools.
It’s hard to believe there are still places in Nigeria that are undiscovered and while I want them to meet up with today’s age, a part of me wants them to remain as untouched and unspoiled as they currently are.
Maybe they could be our version of the Maasai Maras in Kenya?
Have you ever heard of the Komas or seen them? Let us know in the comments section.