1. Madam Koi Koi

Most people have heard about but don’t know her story. If you’re one of these people, come closer. Let us tell you a story.

She was a teacher at a secondary school in Calabar in the late 1970s. She was a very stylish woman who loved to wear high heel shoes and this became her signature look. She was also a very wicked teacher who flogged the living daylight out of her students every chance she got. Some said she was a straight up sadist and used being a teacher as an excuse to inflict extreme pain and torture whenever she pleased. Her students, tired of the school management’s failure to reprimand her, decided to take matters into their own hands.

One night, as she was leaving the school, the students cornered her, gagged her so she wouldn’t scream, and began to beat her mercilessly. One of them even took of one of her shoes and beat her with it. Then she stopped moving. They had overdone it. She was dead.

The students panicked. They threw her body over the school’s back fence and ran. People were going to assume armed robbers did the damage. They were in the clear. Or so they thought.

One by one the students began to vanish. All but one. The one who had hit her with the shoe. He constantly told everyone what he and the others had done and that he heard the sound of high heels clacking around his hostel every night which he believed meant that she was coming for him but no one believed him. They thought he was just trying to scare them. One night, he decided to go find out where the sound was coming from. He never returned. His body was found in the morning. He had been beaten to death.

The school was shut down and all the kids were sent home. These kids, now knowing that the boy was right all along, spread the legend to their new schools. The Legend of Madam Koi Koi.

She walks the halls of hostels every night, clacking the floors with her high heel shoes and if you hear her coming, shut your eyes. If you try to sneak a peak, well,  let’s just say you won’t live long enough to tell anyone what you saw.

2. Bush Babies

Their origin is unknown. They cry like human babies (which is how they got their name) to get your attention and draw you to them. When you do get to one and see what is i.e not a human baby like you thought, you freak out and want to run but you can’t. You’re frozen in place.

Then it comes up to you and makes you an offer you can’t refuse. It gives you a shabby looking mat (the legend says that they all have one), shows you A LOT of money and tells you that if you can successfully keep the mat in your possession for 7 days, all that money and much more will be yours.

Basically it plays on the greed of humans.

The legend doesn’t say what happens if you decline (probably because everyone that has ever come across one has accepted) but it does say what happens if you accept. The Bush Baby lets you go. Just like that. What the creature won’t tell you however is that during those 7 days, it will try VIOLENTLY to take the mat back from you which, given it’s magic like powers, will most likely end with your violent death. Did you really think it would be that easy?

3. Bunk Shaker

This one is really bizarre. There’s no origin story for it. All that is known is that it supposedly haunts boarding schools.

The legend says that it shows up in hostels at night and only attacks people sleeping on the top bunk. It starts to shake the bunk, gently at first, eventually increasing the intensity until the person on the top bunk wakes up to see just what exactly is happening. This is want it wants though because immediately the person looks down, it drags them of the bed and vanishes. The person is never seen again.

At this point in the article we just have to say that if you went to a boarding school and made it out alive, you better thank Jesus everyday!

4. Mami Water

We’ve all heard about them. Outside Nigeria, they are called Mermaids. Fictionalized versions of them have made appearances in art and literature for hundreds of years. What we’re here to tell you however is different from the sugar coated depictions you’re used to.

A Mami Water is a malevolent marine creature that is said to only live in large bodies of water. It is said to have the head and torso of a human female and the tail of a fish. It is common practice in certain parts of the country to appease the mami water by throwing severed goat heads into the water to satiate it’s blood thirst. When a mami water is not appeased, it is said to lure humans to the water and then takes them. This is why your parents never let you go near the water all those times you went to the beach as a child. Oya, call them now and thank them.

5. Dog Eye Water

Oya, wait. You’re probably saying, “Dogs are lovable creatures. They’re man’s best friend! Why are they on this list?” Let us tell you why.

Have you ever wondered why dogs bark at night for seemingly no reason? Have you ever noticed your dog barking in a particular direction at nothing? Well, some people strongly believe that this is because dogs have the ability to see supernatural entities/spirits and when they suddenly go berserk at what looks to you to be nothing, they’re actually trying to alert you to the presence of a spirit that shouldn’t be there.

Some people also believe that if you take a little of the liquid in the eyes of a dog and rub it in yours, you will also, though temporarily, have the ability to see spirits. Anyone that decides to try this should let us know how it works out.

Yikes. If those stories were too scary for you, here’s a list of 15 myths we believed while growing up:

15 Myths Every Nigerian Believed Growing Up


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