5 Nigerians Talk About Being Initiated Into Witchcraft Through Food

January 27, 2021

Are you even Nigerian if your parents didn’t tell you not to collect food from strangers, classmates, neighbours, because they didn’t want you to be initiated into witchcraft?

Because I was interested in knowing if anybody ever got initiated, I put out a call for stories. Here are the answers I got.


I was 6 at the time, and a new student in Primary 2. My seat partner was a girl called Oyiza. Becoming her seat partner meant that her best friend had to move to another seat, and she hated it. It soon became a serious issue, very serious that teachers had to intervene. They made us ‘hug it out’ in front of the whole class.

I was skeptical of the ‘hug’ as a solution to everything. Oyiza had been mean towards me, she tore my notes, lied against me, and hugging her was the right solution? But they were our teachers and they knew best, so I went along with it. The next day, Oyiza brought me candy.

In retrospect, I shouldn’t have taken it. But we were turning a new leaf, so I collected it and licked. My weird dreams began that night. In the dreams, I was being sent to retrieve bones and skulls for a skeleton queen. And there was a condition: I had to arrive on time or I would die at the end of the mission. The dreams went on for three more days before they stopped. For a while after that, whenever I wished something bad on people, like sickness, it would happen.

This was when I became convinced that I’d been initiated, I became scared and confessed to my parents. They took me for deliverance and I missed school for a week. When I returned, Oyiza had transferred out of our school.


This happened back when my parents needed someone to stay with their younger children while they were away at work. My mother spoke to her relatives and they brought someone from the village, a young girl whose age I can’t remember now. She was older than me and my twin sister, but we were very young, so she wasn’t that old. Perhaps in her late teens. She would cook, and do the necessary things, but most importantly, she looked after us (me, my twin, and my younger brother) while our parents were away at work. Naturally, we were close to her. After all, she was the only older figure in the house with us.

One day, we were playing in the house and she carried one of our teddy bears and said she would use it to communicate with her boyfriend, Kelvin. Right there, she started talking in a very weird voice.

“Kelvin, Kelvin, I summon you!”

We thought it was a joke, that she was play-acting to entertain us. But she wasn’t. She told us she was sending him madness. It didn’t exactly make sense to us, but nobody pressed her further. Now, there was this other lady in our apartment block who was friends with our maid, and who, in our maid’s later confession, happened to be a witch too. One day, they were both licking ice cream. The lady offered it to me and my sister. I’ve always had a sweet tooth, so I collected it and licked, but my twin sister refused.

Not long after, things started to go bad in the family. Money issues, and my parents were fighting a lot, so my mother attended a prayer meeting with the maid. I wasn’t taken along, but it was during this prayer meeting that she confessed.

In the story that we were told by my mother, the plan was to initiate me and my twin, but according to her confession, our orisa ibeji was too strong for her to penetrate. We went for deliverance after that, and she was sent back to the village.


I was 3 and we had a housemaid, Aunty Lara. My mum had always warned that I let her know whatever I eat or I’m given outside, but one day, I took a stroll with Aunty Lara and she bought me fried fish. She asked me not to tell anyone, but I told my mum about the fish. Aunty Lara was angry, and I apologized because she really liked me a lot.

I slept in my parents’ room that night. When I woke up in the middle of the night to pee, I saw different types of birds trying to take me away. I screamed, and my parents woke up and began to pray and call Holy Ghost Fire. I kept screaming. Eventually, “fire” caught one of the birds and it melted on the floor. Then the rest disappeared. That was when Aunty Lara knocked on the door. The conclusion my parents drew was that I was to be initiated with the fried fish. I went for deliverance, Aunty Lara too. But deliverance or not, she had to leave our house. Life continued, I grew older, we relocated and I forgot all about it.

About 10 years later, I went to visit my family friends who took over that house from us. When I went into the room where the incident happened, I saw the stain from the melted bird. So I asked them, “You people didn’t clean this stain?” and they said “What stain?”

Apparently, I was the only one who could see it. My mother swears Aunty Lara was really a witch who confessed that she wanted to initiate me. But which African mother won’t? I’m not even religious now, and I have psychosis. It’s a condition that affects the way your brain processes information, and it causes you to lose touch with reality. You might see, hear, or believe things that aren’t real. So, while my mother confirms the incident, it could just have been my mind in a state, because to me, there’s no logical explanation for the whole incident.


My father was abusive. He often hit me and my mother, and one day I told this girl, my classmate, that I was having problems at home. I didn’t know about her; I just needed someone to share my story with and she was available. One day, she told me that she could give me something that would help me do anything to my dad because he was the root of the problems. All I just had to do was eat whatever she brought for me. I wanted to be done with my father’s abuse, so I agreed. I was 8, same as the girl.

She started bringing boiled egg, boiled plantain, banana, eko (agidi), moin moin. I ate it for like a week and then she told me that after school the following day, I would follow her to a place where I would be given the powers. I said okay. I didn’t want my mother to be worried if I came home late the next day, so when I got home that Thursday, I asked for permission to follow the girl. That was when my mother started asking questions and I answered everything. My mother beat the hell out of me. She said, “So you want to be a witch? You want to be a witch, abi?”

After beating me, she took me to a church where they did deliverance for me, white-garment style. They lit coloured candles around me, burned incense and told me to kneel down inside the circle of candles. Then they flogged me with a broom, and gave me something to drink. I vomitted for two days straight.

By the time I was going back to school, my mum told me to avoid the girl. I didn’t want to, so I went and tried to talk to her, but she was running away from me. The next day she didn’t come to school and that was the last I heard of her.


I wasn’t initiated but I came very close. This is why I dislike Amala till date.

I was 7 or 8 then, and we had a housegirl. She was about 16. My mum was pregnant and she needed extra hands since me or my siblings weren’t old enough to assist her, so she reached out to her friend who brought the girl. My father enrolled her in school, and her duties were to prepare our meals, clean the house and assist the cleaning lady to wash our clothes. I often joined her to do whatever she thought I could handle, and we soon became so close that I started to follow her about. I was young and gullible, and I had no sister figure, so she filled that gap.

But my father soon began to suspect her. Her spirit, he said, was antagonising his. He is a traditionalist, and sometimes calls himself a herbalist, so he knows things. He kept the suspicions to himself; I think he wanted to have concrete evidence.

And then my dreams began. In it, a cloaked figure was always trying to grab me, but just before it happened, I would blurt out “Jesus! Jesus!” and be jolted awake. I thought I could handle it, so I never told anyone. Once, I told her about the dreams, but she didn’t look fazed. I did not read any meaning into this.

Until the night she served Amala. That night, my mum told her to prepare Amala for the house. When she was done, she dished everyone’s portions in separate plates as always. But for the first time, she specified which food was mine and which one belonged to my siblings. That was what spiked my father’s suspicion.

He told her to serve him my food instead but she insisted that the food was meant for me and no one else. My dad insisted too, and she declined vehemently. According to her, the portion she dished was the size I always ate. I didn’t see the big deal, but it was already becoming an argument. Finally, my dad ate the food, and she became angry.

When he ate the food, my father felt something in his body. But whatever it was, it didn’t work on him, because he wasn’t her target. That was when she began to shout that the food was for me and not my father. She was hysterical. She confessed that she put something inside my Amala, and that the food was the last stage of my initiation. She confessed that she went to meetings too. It then clicked that she was the reason for the dreams because the meeting days coincided with the days I had those dreams. Her luggage was checked, and we found some of my personal items, including my hair comb.

My father can tell a more detailed story about this period. But I don’t want to ask him because it would bring back memories. Since that time though, he has been very protective of me. And we never employed another housegirl after that.

Kunle Ologunro

Join The Conversation

Bring a friend.

You'll like this


Now on Zikoko

June 12, 2021

Sex Life is an anonymous Zikoko weekly series that explores the pleasures, frustrations and excitement of sex in the lives of Nigerians. The subject of today’s Sex Life is a heterosexual 25-year-old man who became obsessed with penises when he realised his penis was small. He talks about how having a small penis affects his […]

June 12, 2021

By Doyin Olagunju If you were on social media on 27th May 2021, you must have seen a viral video involving Remi Tinubu, a former first lady of Lagos State and a current senator representing Lagos Central senatorial district, in a heated argument with another woman over the fact that Ms Tinubu called the woman […]

June 11, 2021

In life, there are many things you can be. One of them is a country, and that’s on period. We’ve already told you which country you were meant to be born in. Take this quiz to find out which European country you have hidden in you. Gather your fave sport buddies and watch all the […]

Recommended Quizzes

October 29, 2019

We are going to be attempting to guess when you’ll marry based on your favourite Nigerian foods. What does your fave swallow have to do with when you’ll tie the knot? Please, don’t ask complicated questions. This quiz is rigorous and accurate (don’t quote us), so just take it already. QUIZ: Why Do You Have […]

November 1, 2019

Twitter is buzzing right now, bringing a new conversation to the concept of cool vs not-so-cool, especially in relationships. If you’ve been thinking about how much of a red flag you are, why don’t you let this quiz help you decide once and for all?

April 1, 2020

Everyone has a Nigerian bank that matches their personality. You could either be as likeable as GTB, as efficient as Access or as mature as First Bank. Either way, all you have to do is take this quiz and we’ll let you know with almost 100% certainty. So, go ahead:

June 14, 2020

Have you ever been with someone so horrible that you swore to never date again? Yes? Well, do you know that one or more of your exes probably feels the same way about you? You never thought about that, huh? Thankfully, this quiz is here to let you know just how much of a hassle […]

November 22, 2019

It can be very stressful when you’re trying to find the love of your life, but you only keep meeting people that are exactly like your yeye ex. To help you be more aware of that problem, we’ve created a quiz that lets you know the kind of people you are attracting. Take it to […]

More from Chopist

April 16, 2021

If you enjoy any of the fruits on this list, delete every tweet that suggests you’re broke and stop lying. 1. Strawberries Everyone that makes strawberry flavoured snacks or beverages is a dirty smelling liar. Strawberries are not sweet. They are sour as fuck. In addition to being sour, they’re also expensive as hell. So […]

March 18, 2021

One of the most thriving industries in Lagos is the restaurant industry, People are always looking for where to spend money when there is rice at home, in this economy? And on that salary? Anyways, here are a few tips on breaking into this industry. 1. Make sure it’s in a hidden location What’s fun […]

March 4, 2021

Onscreen chemistry is one thing Old Nollywood got right. Some actors and actresses just had this thing that left you rooting for them hard even when you don’t think you should be. We decided to rank the top five couples from Old Nollywood that were everything. Genevieve Nnaji and Emeka Ike I know Tony Umez […]


Trending Videos

Zikoko Originals

December 14, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
November 2, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
October 26, 2020
A collection of videos documenting some of the events of the EndSARS protests.
June 22, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
June 22, 2020
Hacked is an interesting new series by Zikoko made up of fictional but hilarious chat conversations.
June 4, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
June 2, 2020
Quickie is a video series where everyone featured gets only one minute to rant, review or do absolutely anything.
May 14, 2020
Isolation Diary is a Zikoko series that showcases what isolation is like for one young Nigerian working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
March 12, 2020
Life is already hard. Deciding where to eat and get the best lifestyle experiences, isn't something you should stress about. Let VRSUS do that for you.

Z! Stacks

Here's a rabbit hole of stories to lose yourself in:

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.