23 African Proverbs and Movie Quotes from Nollywood Actor Pete Edochie

If you’ve ever watched any decent Nollywood movie, chances are you must have heard some of the words of veteran Nigerian actor, Pete Edochie.

The 73-year-old is considered to be one of the most talented actors in Africa, and he is famous for his masterful use of African proverbs to communicate his messages in movies.

By far his most popular work is when he played the lead role, Okonkwo in NTA’s screen adaptation of Chinua Achebe’s Things Fall Apart in the 1980s.

African proverbs are fascinating, they are wise sayings with deeper meanings that can be used to elaborate, and communicate messages more clearly.

Here are 23 wise sayings extracted from Pete Edochie movies over the years.

1. “A person who sells eggs should not start a fight in the market.”

2. “People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.”

3. “Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber.”

4. “Beware of the naked man who offers you clothes.”

5. “Whenever you are feeling blue, remember the spirits of our ancestors are watching over us, and God cannot let you down.”

6. “Stupidity is what we all have in common as human beings, but some people insist that improving it is their entitlement.”

7. “A girl may never get married if she waits for the PERFECT MAN.”

8. “A diplomat is one who thinks twice before saying nothing.”

9. “The frowning of a he-goat does not stop it from being priced.”

10. “If A Man Wants To Grow A Long Tooth, He Should Have The Lip To Cover it.”

11. “If you sell your father’s land to buy a trumpet where will you stand to blow it?”

12. “Girls are like mangoes. While you are waiting for them to ripen, others are eating them with salt.”

13. “The death of a lion cannot be announced by a goat.”

14. “If you sell a drum in your own village, you get the money and keep the sound.”

15. “Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.”


Pete Edochie in Flavor’s Golibe video

16. “Whoever presents his own head to break coconut would not be able to partake in the eating process.”

17. “In this part of the world, it is bad manners for a child to eat the meat before the main food. The meat on the food is your reward, it should be slowly enjoyed.”

18. “Those who had their nuts cracked by a benevolent spirit should not forget to be humble.”

19. “A wise person knows that there is something to be learned from everyone.”

20. “It requires wisdom to understand wisdom; the music is nothing if the audience is deaf.”

21. “The leopard is beautiful but has a bad heart.”

22. “The walls don’t only have ears, they now see.”

23. “A child who asks questions does not become a fool.”

Pete Edochie is a fascinating African actor, if you are interested and will like to know more about his work, you should check out a part of his filmography. Some have estimated that he has appeared in more than 300 movies over his 40-year career in Nollywood.


A writer! Columnist and an academic researcher
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