Why I never wear English clothes – Tar Ukoh

Tar Ukoh
Tar Ukoh

Tar Ukoh is an indigene of Benue State and a retired broadcaster. He was born into a Catholic family and has two children. He named his daughter, Cuba, and his son, Africa.

Mr. Ukoh as a scholar of African cultural work has strong beliefs in the African tradition and does not believe in dressing in contemporary styles. Being from a Catholic home, his priests were against his beliefs.

His biggest inspiration is Fidel Castro and Che Guevara. At 17, he became a Cuban revolutionary. It was at this age he started asking questions as to why he has to dress like a European. After schooling in different African countries, it made him aware and enlightened about the African movement.

While explaining his reasons for sticking to his cultural beliefs in an interview with PREMIUM TIMES, he said, “I do not think I have to persuade the West for who I am. I don’t need to apologise for being an African.

“Who says I must look like you in a suit to be a gentleman when that is what I will be regarded as with my outfit in my culture. All these things I wear are hand woven crafts.

“Imagine if we developed our crafts in textile, so many jobs will be provided for the unemployed.”

Listen to the full interview below.


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  • the_adviser

    That costume of his is not appropriate for hard work anywhere including farm work.

  • Dazmillion

    Mr. Ukoh these outfits you are wearing are ceremonial outfits, they are not dresses that hardworking farmers of 500 years ago would wear every day. If you are so critical about western influences how come you are relaxing on a western styled chair? would the African wooden chairs not be more appropriate? and shouldn’t you be riding on a donkey or horse?

    • mustapha Shehu

      What of the means of communication that aired the interview.

  • popo

    Its quite clear that he talks about CHLOTHES. Aint nothing wrong with that. By the way a bankers suit can not be comfortably worn to do farm work. So guys put your statement into perspective

  • Maria

    I hope he is also living in a thatched mud house!

  • Manu

    Cuban revolutionary my foot! Does Fidel Castro not wear a suit? This is just an attention-seeking venture and sheer hypocrisy!

  • Sani Tilde

    Everyone is entitle to his/her opinion, but to me we live in the world of interdependency thus we cant do without each other. While respecting those who stick to their cultural values, I equally adorn to some of my own but had to borrow those that I found comfortable from others. Abatcha (an Igbo Salad) as an example, become one of my best dish that wherever I saw it I can’t afford to leave without taking one or two plate(s). So Ukor try in his own way.