The phrase ‘O Jewa ke eng‘ has been on Twitter since the beginning of the year. While some of us may still not know what the phrase means, some of us are just wondering why it has trended for so long.
First tweeted by @akreana_ on the 5th of January, O jewa ke eng is a South African phrase that means “what’s bothering you” or “what’s eating you up”. Although she was probably talking to her South African followers, the phrase has somehow found its way into the Nigerian Twittersphere and stayed.
The interesting part of the trend was how the phrase went from being mysterious to being able to get people to share and talk about their deep and painful experiences with strangers online.
At first, most people shared their stories with anonymous screenshots and handles but as the trend grew wider, it gave room to different versions and groups while maintaining the real question O jewa ke eng. It also interestingly provided a platform for people to get help.
After it got retweeted by a Nigerian, the Nigerian version began and even branched out into different peculiar versions; from the O jewa ke eng work version to the feminist version to the LGBT version, to the atheist version. e.t.c
People are still wondering how this trend has stayed for so long and we realized that in addition to how the trend encourages people to open up about the painful experiences in their lives, it reminds everyone that sometimes, a problem shared is a problem half solved after all.
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Featured Image: YouTube via Ohwge