I am Igbo and I am finding it hard to come up the English name of these people so I will write what they are called in Igbo. In my language they call them Ndi n’egbu anu (I don’t know if Chicken butchers is the best name for it, but lets leave it that way). Their job is only to kill and cut the chicken into bits. For instance, when you go to the market and buy a live chicken, they approach you and offer to kill it for you. These people are usually found around the area where live poultry (especially chicken) is sold. The occupation comprises of both males and females in every part of Nigeria.
Butchering a chicken in Nigeria costs ₦200 per one, most times, depending on your level of bargain, they may accept to kill it for ₦100/150.
I met with one of them, in order to know about the occupation and how it has benefited them in their struggle for survival in Nigeria.
Being a Christian from Anambra State, this elderly woman has been involved in this business for about 6 years. But she wasn’t at this particular place before, she moved into the market (Ekeoka) about 3 years ago.
She learnt the occupation from the market by merely coming and watching people as they do the business (It involves nothing really hard). The process involves, cutting the chickens throat for the blood to flow out, ensuring that it is totally dead (by the time it stops shaking), putting it inside a hot water so as to enable you remove the feather, then you begin to cut it into bits.
It was her friend that encouraged her to venture into the business – (keep positive friends that can encourage you to start up something).
As an elderly woman, she has finished training her children while she was younger with the money she got from her former business. The chicken butcher is involved in this business because rather than being idle in the house, she needs to exercise her body, and avoid depending on her children for monthly money for her upkeep. She said it is the younger ones in the business that make enough money from it because they are agile and very fast.
The chicken butcher advised that it is good for everybody to do something because if a person is idle, hunger will kill such a person.