Marriage ceremony in Hausa land is a major highlight that would help many understand the culture and see its uniqueness when compared to the other tribes in Nigeria.
Hausa traditional marriage is based on Islamic rites. When compared to marriages in Igbo and Yoruba land, it is less expensive and dramatic. The processes of Hausa marriage could be broken into the following six processes:
1. Na gani ina
Like most marriages in Nigeria, the first step is seeking the consent of the parents of the bride after the groom or his family has made their choice. This is often referred to as ‘Na gani ina’ which means what I see. The parents of the bride on the other hand starts planning and make moves to investigate the family of the man that has shown interest in their daughter.
The research done by the family of the bride is to find out the key things considered important to them. Most families check the religious beliefs of the groom to be, family background, qualification, moral and ethics.
2. Friendship between the couple
Upon being satisfied with the findings made, the groom is then allowed to see the bride briefly. This is to help them know each other a little.
The family discourages them from having any form of physical contact or courting. If the bride to-be is in agreement with the whole marriage proposal, then the parents of the man make the move to formally ask for the girl’s hand in marriage.
Although, this method may be slightly different for all the tribes in that part of the country, it is presumed to be the most common.
3. Kanya Zance and Gaisuwais
The family of the groom goes to the bride’s family bearing gift items like Kolanut, sweets and other things. The groom’s family also provides what is called Kayan Zance. The items include fabrics, cosmetic products, perfumes, underwears, scarves, shoes and money. When these items are accepted and the negotiation for bride price begins, Gaisuwais is said to have taken place.
4. Rubu Dinar
The bride price is most times set to be low so that the blessings that will be gotten from the union may be more. The minimum payment is referred to saw as Rubu Dinar; this is a quarter kilogram of gold piece. The groom’s family can however pay more if they are financially buoyant.
5. Sadaki and Sarana
The term Sadaki means dowry, the moment it is paid, the bride belongs to the groom. After this, the wedding date is agreed upon by both families. Setting of the wedding date is called Sarana.
In most cases, the groom’s family makes provision for the house which the couple would live in. However, it is the responsibility of the bride’s family to furnish the house. Special attention is paid to the bride’s kitchen, living room and bedroom.
6. Fatihah, Kunshi and Walimah
The wedding day is called Fatihah; the families of the couple would be present while the bride herself would be made to go through Kunshi. During the wedding Fatihah which comes under the Daurin Aure, vows are being made with prayers made for the couple.
This is more or less a bridal shower which prepares the bride for her new role as a wife. The bride is being taught various things that may be considered helpful in her new home. While at it, various perfumes are being rubbed on the bride while Henna is applied on her hands and feet.
After these events, the wedding reception which is called Walimah takes place. Guests present at the wedding are being entertained with various foods and drinks. At the end of the day, the bride is being led to her husband’s house. This is referred to as Kai Amariya. The bride is being prayed for before she takes her leave.