Balaraba Ramat Yakubu


Balaraba Ramat Yakubu (born 1959) is a Nigerian author who writes in Hausa. She is a leader in the genre of "love literature", and one of the very few Hausa-language writers whose work has been translated into English. She has also worked as a screenwriter, producer, and director of Kannywood films. Her stories have focused on issues such as forced marriages and women's education.

Juyin Sarauta Abuja


  • Majority of people that messed up their lives end up becoming wasted... There are exceptions though... So I am not the one punishing men in my novels, life treats them accordingly.
    • [1] Balarabe answering questions on her characters.
  • There have been more than 70 studies done on my books at various levels of education-NCE, Bachelors, Masters, Diploma etc. Many of these students are fascinated that Hausa writers have such great ideas... This is great that we contribute in positive ways to our society’s attitudinal change and by extension national development. Writers are diamonds. We crystalize societies.
  • I am not disputing the fact that some writers have crossed boundaries in their writings. Yes, some have gone the extra mile to be explicit. That is very, very wrong. I hope they will stop one day. But why are people only worried about Hausa novels? What about the English and other literature in which many things that shouldn’t be told are written bare! I advise parental control over reading.
    • [2] Balarabe answering questions on Hausa writers corrupting the north.
  • We are Muslims and we have rules in Islam for marriage and so on. But sometimes, our culture dominates the religious dictates and culture and religion are different. So, I fight because I want to stress that culture and religion are different. Probably that is why I'm called a controversial writer.
  • ...I tackle issues that some people and writers are afraid to talk about. Before, some old people like my mother's age mates think that their husbands are second to their God but I let them know that their husband is their mate, friend and whatever. Before, it was not like that and because that belief is still dominant in the northern states, whenever you touch that area, men don't like it.
    • [3] Balarabe on being a controversial writer.
  • I don't buy the idea of early marriage because I had to push myself to understand the little English I'm speaking with you. If I hadn't pushed myself, I wouldn't have understood any English. I really desire our daughters in the North to be well educated. I have only two daughters and I want them to have quality education.
    • [4] Balarabe Ramat Yakubu responding on why she advocates for formal education for girls in the North.

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