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Traffic can be blamed for reaching your workplace late most especially when you live in a city like Lagos. But when it comes to attending owambes—the traffic may have nothing to do with the regular “African time” culture.

Are you organizing owambe next weekend? 

Pẹlẹ—I’m sorry, some of your guests including your bestie don’t care how bold 10:00AM prompt was printed on the invitation card. 

It could be said that some guests just want to steal the day and get the whole attention by coming a bit after the appointed time in a jaw-dropping ankara fashion.  

However, there’s always an exception to every rule. Others are victims of African time for other reasons. It appears that women are often the victims. A frustrated husband would be tempted to ask “how long does it take to get ready?”

That may actually be a study to look into.

Dressing Up For 9-to-5

Keep traffic aside even though you live in a populated city like Lagos or Mumbai, both men and women tend to arrive at work frequently early. There are various factors to consider, such as:

  • Appearing committed to your job
  • Personally standing out
  • Setting a good example as a department leader or manager 
  • For promotion opportunities for being consistent etc.

We understand that that’s where the bread comes from. Hence, we see both men and women keeping up with time in most cases.

Nigerian celebrities, Mo Bimpe and Lateef

But for couples, single men, and single women dressing up for owambe events is a different ball game. While you’re expecting your trusted guests to keep up with time, they might be keeping up with the Kardashians as they dress up one step at a time. The plan is to “pepper” them—become the center of attention at the ceremony and own the day.

It is popular that men are pretty straightforward to get dressed. It’s like, ‘Is it a black or grey agbada?’ They match the matchables and start horning.

Say observing African time isn’t intentional, here are five timesaving tips to help dismantle Africa time culture:

Here Are 5 Timesaving Tips To Dismantle “African Time”

  1. Plan ahead and shop in advance to avoid any last-minute shopping trips
  2. Choose an outfit that is easy to put together so you don’t have to spend time customizing or tweaking it
  3. Accessorize your outfit in advance – have jewelry, handbags, and shoes ready to go so you don’t have to scramble to find them
  4. Have a backup plan in case of a wardrobe malfunction
  5. If possible, enlist a friend or family member to help you with your look

By Elijah Christopher 


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