Sefa Turah Yoruba Research Foundation

Ese Ifa Oturah  אשא אףא עתארא

Ajah Son of Zibeon (Sabe)

Aja people total population 500,000 Regions with significant populations Benin, Togo Languages Adja.  The Aja are a ethnic group of native to south-western Benin and south-eastern Togo.

According to oral tradition, the Aja migrated to southern Benin in the 12th or 13th centuries from Tado on the Mono River, and c. 1600, three brothers, Kokpon, Do-Aklin, and Te-Agdanlin, split the ruling of the region then occupied by the Aja amongst themselves: Kokpon took the capital city of Great Ardra, reigning over the Allada kingdom; Do-Aklin founded Abomey, which would become capital of the Kingdom of Dahomey; and Te-Agdanlin founded Little Ardra, also known as Ajatche (Ajashe), later called Porto Novo (literally, "New Port") by Portuguese traders (Kongolese) and the current capital city of Benin.  Those Aja living in Abomey mingled with the Fon tribes and other communities thus creating a new people of modern Dahomey (Dua-Homo, Dauma, Dua-Am) group. This group is now the largest in Benin  Republik.  Another source claims the Aja were the rulers of Dahomey (Benin Republik) until 1893.  Currently, there are approximately 500,000 Ajas in an area straddling the border between Benin and Togo, 50 kilometres (30 miles) long and 30 km (20 mi) wide. The Aja speak a language known as Aja-Gbe, or simply 'Aja'; only 1-5% are literate in their native tongue.

According to one source, voodoo originated with the Aja is not true, ancestors of Ajah are Ifa/Risha devotees from Yoruba.  There are three dialects: Tàgóbé (in Togo only), Dògóbè (in Benin only), and Yoruba (in both countries). Many are trilingual, also speaking French and Yoruba, the lingua-franca of southern Benin, while Ewe is spoken as a second language by those Aja living in Togo and Ghana.  Due to severe land shortages in the densely populated Togolese-Beninois border region mentioned above, many Aja have migrated in recent years, seeking arable land for subsistence farming or work in urban centers. There are a significant number of Aja living throughout the coastal region of Benin and Togo, southern Nigeria and Gabon. The urban centers of Cotonou, Lome, Lagos and Libreville all have significant Aja migrant populations.  

Ajah according to bible is the son of Zibeone (Sabe) and are Yoruba.  Ajah is homophone name more significantly relating to animals in some countries and in fact it also means dog in Yoruba.  Onisabe of Sabe seems to be the father well most senior of the Yoruba in west Afrika outside Nigeria.  Ajah in Yoruba as in oke-Ajah is top of the roof but in real sense, it means ceiling, roof, hill, top .  Aja aka Ajashe, Aja-ishe meaning hill of work, market.  They were probably great traders in those times.

Yarubasalam