Les Nigériens au Royaume-Uni: Re-Introducing London’s Nigérien Community

We’re not speaking of Nigerians but Nigériens. Not much is known about the Niger Republic in London; let alone the UK and dare stay throughout non-French speaking Europe. There’s an argument to suggest why on earth is this article being written; but life it’s not just about serving ‘majorities’ but ‘minorities’. Niger is a county close to my heart, I have extended family, made some great friends the some whilst based in Belgium (there is a large community there) and have good ties with the country.

buhari2
I don’t politics. But I won’t deny this is a very nice photo of Niger President Mahamadou Issoufou (right) and Nigeria President Muhammadu Buhari in India (It’s got that brother’s feel). Credits: TheNationOnline.ng

#Nigéria ==> #nigérian ==> Nigerian (English way of spelling Nigerian)

#Niger ===> #nigérien ==> Nigerien (English way of spelling Nigérien)

#Arrêtez Ça!!

The quote above represents some of the typical responses from Africa’s francophone communities (living in France and Belgium) towards those that still do not understand the difference between Niger and Nigeria. At the world cup two years ago when France beat Nigeria, it was a common sight  to see people on social media congratulate Nigeria and Nigériens alike – only to find that Nigérien refers to the people of Niger or Niger and not the people of Nigeria which in french is Nigérian.


Nigériens à Londres: Nigerien Community in London

Yoruba, Hausa, Igbo and Pidgin English are main languages that dominate much of Africa’s most populous country whilst Hausa, Zarma, Tuareg and Arabic dominate the small and humble Niger nation. Niger is Nigeria’s northern neighbour and the similarity in names comes from both countries deriving their names for the Niger river – even CNN (below) couldn’t note the difference. There are a handful of 2nd and 3rd generation Nigeriens that are in the UK having moved from France and Belgium.

1407335207-08062014

Migrants from Niger Republic are spread across the country as students and expats in very small numbers. Nigeriens have a very small population in the UK (believed to be less than 500 Niger Citizens) and London but some can be found In North East London at Kilburn, Harlesden and Stepney Green. The majority (who are Hausa, djerma and Zarma speaking are Muslims) get on well with Francophone Africans, Northern Nigerians and Ghanaians, Arabs and Sudanese. Nigeriens are noted to be reserved, humble and conservative yet welcoming people.


A Few UK Based Nigerien Bodies:


1) GRENASAD (Nigerien Students Group in England for the Protection of Democratic Achievements)

Vive le Niger | Vive la Démocratie

img_1665

Pour le GRENASAD ( Groupe d’Etudiants Nigériens en Angleterre pour la Sauvegarde des Acquis Démocratiques )
signés  le 16 Septembre 2009  à Londres (Angleterre )
Le Coordinateur Provisoire . Sidikou Bourahima Gade
Le Rapporteur Principal . Bachir Abdou
Le Rapporteur Adjoint. Hassane Hamadou
Le Facilitateur. Adamou Abdoulaye Djibo
Tel : 00(44) 755271537
Email a : grenasad@yahoo.co.uk


2) Niger Consulate, UK (temporarily closed)

TOPSHOT-NIGER-POLITICS-VOTEThere are only a handful of people and resources that you can aid you to locate the Nigerien community in the UK and London. Surprise Surprise; the embassy is the best place to start. The Consulate of Niger is located in Maida Vale in Kilburn, North London. The Honorary Consul along with his team are very supportive and doing a great job integrating and serving the Nigerien community and friends of Niger alike. Their address can be found here or below at:

Main Office: Consulate of the Republic of Niger UK MPC House 15 Maple Mews Maida Vale London NW6 5UZ Tel: 0207 328 8180 Fax: 0207 328 8120


3) DARN-UK

165.3_CP_NigerThey are DARN-UK and that stands for the ‘Diaspora Association of Republic of Niger Nationals’. This association was established in the UK in 2012. DARN-UK is the Diaspora Association of Republic of Niger Nationals in the UK. The Diaspora Association is a social, non-political, anti-racist and non-religious organisation in all its aspects. It doesn’t reflect nor does it defend the interest of any political party or religious tendencies in Niger or in the United Kingdom.

*** Do you know or want to recommend other Nigérien projects and/or organisations based in the UK and/or London? Feel free to comment below or contact me via Twitter: @AfricanCB or Facebook: /AfricanCultureBlog

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