As Nigerian women, we’ve all been there. Casually minding our own business when someone from nowhere screams ‘asewo’ at you. So we made a list of every instance you are likely to be called an asewo.

Overtaking a man while driving.

I was late for work and the man driving in front of me was going very very slow, so I overtook. Before I knew it he sped up to jam me at a junction just to say ‘Asewo who gave you car?’ – Simi

For spending too long at the ATM.

You know how most ATMs have a 20k limit? So I was trying to withdraw 100k and obviously had to withdraw 20k five times. By the time I was doing the third withdrawal, the man behind me shouted ‘asewo leave there now’. – Ada

For just walking through the market.

Everytime I walk through Yaba market and make the ‘mistake’ of telling a trader to stop dragging me, someone must scream asewo at me. – Bolu

For owning an iPhone.

Bought an iPhone X shortly after it came out and posted selfies on Twitter with the phone showing. I sha made a joke about how everyone else needed to level up. I didn’t mention anyone o, one Uncle just entered my mentions with – All these asewos don’t even waste time again. – Sola

For trying to get a drink at a bar.

Wanted to grab drinks at the bar of one hotel with my friends and security didn’t want to let us in. After making noise and shouting that they should call their oga, a ‘manager’ sha called us aside to explain that they don’t allow single women in because they are trying to stop prostitutes from entering the hotel. When I asked if he was calling my friends and I prostitutes he said he couldn’t be too sure. – Chidi

For refusing to give a man my number.

This has happened to me more than once sef. One minute they are telling you things like your beauty can blind them, the next minute you are an asewo. No in between. – Olukemi

For being out with a white man.

I was out for lunch with a business client who happened to be white and I could hear the girls at the table beside me clearly debating on whether or not I was an asewo the whole time they were there. Their conclusion before they left? I was definitely an asewo. – Anne.

For cancelling an Uber.

Called an Uber, on the app he was five minutes away. When I called him, he said he was on the next street. Twenty minutes later he was still five minutes away so I cancelled. Next thing I got was an angry text saying that I was an asewo who will never prosper in life. – Halima

For sitting in front of a danfo.

I waited thirty minutes at a bus stop just to get front seat in a bus. Only for a passenger that came after me to ask me to go to the back. I just ignored me. Before I know it, he starts screaming asewo up and down. I just put earphones in my ears – Teniola

For wearing shorts.

Put on shorts just to walk down my street to buy indomie. Before I finished locking my gate a passerby had called me asewo. – Faith

For having dollars in my wallet.

Got stopped and searched by police, and they found some one dollar notes in my wallet. Next thing they ask is ‘if I’m not an asewo why am I carrying dollars around’, that I must be sleeping with oyibo men. – Seyi

For dancing.

It was my Aunt’s 50th birthday party and I was dancing with my friends. Another Aunt came to tell me that I was dancing like an agaracha (another word for asewo) and I should stop. I’ve blocked her number. – Tega

For telling someone to do the right thing.

Was on a queue for some NYSC thing and one Uncle tried to jump it. So I called him out and asked him to go to the back of the line, he refused. I then told him that if he didn’t go I’ll go and look for an official to report to. He said ‘Abeg shut up jo, asewo’. I made sure he went to the back of the line that day – Doyin


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