Elizabeth Mbiwan - Online Memorial Website

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Elizabeth Mbiwan
Born in Cameroon
82 years
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Her 80th Birthday

Mummy turned 80 on November 26 2009 and to mark the Occasion I posted a TRIBUTE to her on our ExSSA-USA egroup. Our Family - Mummy herself included, was Greatly BLESSED by the REACTIONS that ensued. That birthday was also celebrated at the Mbiwan Family Home in Bomaka with close friends and family. The script and pictures on this page are therefore meant to "immortalize" and share that MILESTONE in Mummy's life. WHAT A WOMAN!


Egbe Monjimbo

Sent: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 3:35 PM
To: 'exsa_usa@yahoogroups.com'; 'EX-SakerUSA@yahoogroups.com'


 JUST HAD TO WRITE & SHARE THIS, MY DEAR SISTERS! To live to be an octogenarian no be small ting oh!                                               


Mrs. Elizabeth Efeti Mbiwan, née Mbongo is known to her 3 surviving children as well as to a host of other people she helped raise simply as “Mummy”. Her 7 grand children just call her “Granny”, while her younger sisters fondly call her “Sist’Elizbeth” or “Sister Miss” since, virtually the minute she got her STANDARD SIX certificate “in those days”, she turned right around and taught in the local Basle Mission School she had just graduated from, becoming both teacher and sister to them. There are also a host of nieces, nephews and God-children who refer to her as “Aunty Lizzy”. Well, the Deacon, Elder, Choir Mistress, Sunday School Teacher, CWF Leader, Teacher, and Head Mistress turns 80 tomorrow, – THANKSGIVING DAY, and I cannot thank God enough for the blessing that she has always been – and continues to be to me and to SO MANY!!

At the risk of having whoever owns the copyrights to the poem “MY MOTHER” sue me for plagiarism, I have decided to adapt the familiar poem to suit my needs, in a bid to celebrate a human being to whom I owe so much! Here goes:

-        Who made us drink NOTEZINE (for filaria), DARAPRIM, (“the Sunday-Sunday malaria-preventive merecine”), NIVAQUINE (for malaria), TOPLEXIL (for cough), PHILLIPS’ MILK OF MAGNESIA (for upset stomachs), COD LIVER OIL, CASTOR OIL & WORM MEDECINE no matter how much we resented it? My Mother!

-        Who covered us from head to toe with IODINE, GAUZE & “PLASTER”, CALAMINE LOTION, FREEDOM BALM, & ABOKI to take care of cuts, scrapes, rashes and aches? My Mother!

-        Who sewed practically every single item of clothing we wore as children on her TREADLE Sewing Machine, paying absolutely no attention to our protests about the sewing pins pricking us when we were “summoned” to try them on? My Mother!

-        Who made sure that she regularly sent us off to “Sango Pastor’s” house carrying a sumptuous 3 course meal in a basket covered with hand embroidered dish cloths whereas all we were having at home was “OKONG-OBONG”? My mother!

-        Who showed up at a “SHAKARA & LADY/JAMES BROWN-type” teen party in her KABA and PINK FOAM HAIR ROLLERS (along with Mrs. BEJANGA who wisely stayed in the car), to get my sister Didi and I who had failed to respect the midnight curfew she had given us before we left? My Mother! (God knows, we would have preferred to turn into “ponkies” à la Cinderella, rather than face the embarrassment!)

-        Who made no attempt to stop these same 2 musketeers when we ran off after a “tipper” one Saturday afternoon all the way from Messa, through Mokolo to Madagascar & Nkomkana, but instead sat waiting for us to “go cam back” with her “Dr. DO GOOD” on her lap (along with her knitting and Woman’s Own Magazine), just inside the front door? My Mother! ( We were carried away, (Pied Piper style), by the music being played by the Orchestra that was lodged at the back of the “lorry”, not to talk of the newlyweds and their entire bridal train who were all dancing in the street like the word “divorce” had been forever erased or banished from the dictionary!

-        Who “stocked” our home with the biggest and most diverse Home Library I had ever seen, with publications ranging from every African Writers Series book under the sun (“EFURU” by Flora Nwapa was my favorite), to all the classics, without ignoring the Fairy Tales and Nursery Rhymes resulting in my being able to do better than just spell my name today? My Mother!

-        Who, when it was discovered that I had brought home head lice, did not even bat an eyelid but proceeded immediately, with alarming sang-froid, to grind a considerable number of CAMPHOR balls, douse the resulting granules with “Red oil”, copiously ANOINT my head with the mixture till my eyes and ears “runneth over”, and then tightly wrap my entire head in a CNU (as in Ahmadou Ahidjo), CICAM headtie? My Mother!! (You’d better believe that, when she washed my hair out 2 days later with DOP SHAMPOO, there wasn’t a single louse in that bathroom sink that did not show signs of having experienced a very traumatic and agonizing death!! R.I.P!!)

-        Who completely ignored me, (PRAISE THE LORD!), when I came home for the Christmas Holidays after my first term in Form 1 and pleaded with her not to make me go back to “chapearing” and dealing with Likomba in Saker Baptist College? My Mother!

-        Who banned pidgin-English in our household as well as any use of “bad language”? My mother! There was definitely no “see yah big-big eye dem like witch bird” going on in our house, to talk much less of anything remotely related to or resembling “Your mammy …!”; “coshing” was just not allowed.

-        Who instilled a healthy dose of self worth and self esteem in her daughters (biological and “adopted” alike), being careful to make them understand that they were neither superior nor inferior to anyone else but UNIQUE, in the sense that they each had a Divine Purpose in life that God had ordained for them, which no one else could fulfill, and that there was no such thing as a person with NO TALENT?! My Mother!!

I could go on and on forever and a day and still not be half way done with all the things she has done, (including the original sitting and watching my infant head when sleeping on my cradle bed), but I cannot possibly sign off without stating what I am MOST THANKFUL FOR, which is her LEGACY OF UNFLINCHING FAITH!!! She has gone through untold trials, (some whose length, breadth and depth I am only beginning to grasp now that I am a woman, a wife and a mother myself), all without wavering in her FAITH! How does one lose an only brother, an only son and have your widowed best friend practically die in your arms as you rush her to hospital, (to mention just these three tragic events), and still find the strength to carry on, praising, trusting and SERVING GOD with more and more FERVOR everyday – with no trace of bitterness or rancor??!! Passionate, (from-the-very-depths-of-your-soul) Prayer, Faithful Fasting, Diligent Tithing, Sincere Praise/Hymn Singing, Intensive Bible Study, Exemplary Church Attendance, Involvement and Fellowship, etc. are all things she LIVES OUT and MODELS – not just talks about. In fact, I look forward to the day I finally get to the point where someone can honestly say to me: “You feevah yah Mammy, time no dey”! That, in my opinion, would be a compliment that only comes second to the ultimate “Well done, thou good and faithful servant …” which I hope, by faith, to hear someday, in the sweet by and by!

HAPPY 80th, DEAR MUMMY, and May the Good Lord you continue to serve and trust, Bless and Keep You Today & Always!

Egbe Mbiwan Monjimbo

(a VERY THANKFUL “lass pikin” who must stop here and go back to join the 16th birthday celebration of her son who is named after the UNCLE ACHA he never had the privilege of knowing because GOD, in His “ashia yah” / dry-your-tears” way of doing things, made sure he was born to us, a good 2 weeks early, (in HÔPITAL LAQUINTINIE’s “labor room”), exactly on his Late Uncle’s Birthday! The look on his maternal grandmother’s face that day?: PRICELESS!! If nah you?! Jehovah gave her another birthday present thirteen years after He had chosen to take the “original” one home! BLESS HIS NAME!





Sent: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 4:28 PM
Subject: Re: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80; A MILESTONE IN DEED!!

My dearest Egbe, our very own Aunty Lizzy (my mother's namesake) certainly deserves the befitting tribute that you've given her! Please extend my hearty congratulations to her and tell her that we are still struggling to walk in the path that she's blazed in serving the Lord. We wish her the Lord's richest blessings as she continues on life's journey. Happy Thanksgiving to you and to our entire EXSSA family. Love. Sis/Aunty Stella Anyangwe

Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device



Sent: Thursday, November 26, 2009 2:06 AM
To: emonjimbo

 I still am uncomfortable for the most part with sharing my deep feelings on the general page(s). This email is one of those that I really could not bring myself to reply on the group net. Please extend my hearty congratulations to Auntie on her birthday. Please let her know that there are many of us out here with just the warmest thoughts of her; with thanks to God that He put such formidable women in our path who helped shaped us into the women we either already are, or hope to become. For helping us have these standards that we know we can live up to. You know there are some people (many) who have never encountered such formidable women for real. So they really are unable to imagine that such actually walk this earth. Imagine what this means. It means that such people are not even trying to live up to such standards. So you see why I thank God that He blessed me too to know such a formidable woman personally. Please tell her this for me and tell her that I wish her all the very best of God's blessings every day.


Since you brought up and Anita too talked about that sad night, let me tell you this. The song "Beulah Land" is one I cannot sing without thinking of Acha. This is because Mama taught us that song that night, and told us that Auntie and her sisters (I think) had sung that song when their brother passed away. She taught us this song that same night before we got word about the accident. Can you imagine that? I loved the song when she taught it to us that night. I have loved it since then. I cannot sing it without thinking of that night.


Have a wonderful thanksgiving.


Sent: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 9:08 PM
To: emonjimbo


What a powerful and befitting tribute to your 'rémé' on her 80th!!  God bless her!!  You are a gift to us from your mother that keeps giving.  We praise Him!


It is really true that in life there are no coincidences as your moving anecdotes depict.


Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Etonde.


Angel Asobo

Sent: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 7:20 PM
To: emonjimbo

Wow....! Many more blessed years to your Momsie, what a tribute!


Judith Foyabo


Sent: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 6:13 PM
To: exsa_usa@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80: A MILESTONE IN DEED!!!


A wonderful tribute to a wonderful mother! Happy 80th, Mummy Mbiwan. (You know dis ya tok-tok pikin will eventually spill all your mothering secrets!).


Happy Birthday, young Acha. Your namesake used to play the guitar and sing: "Na tondi wa na mulema na mwese..eh", just because I pestered him to on the strength of being his big sister's buddy.


Happy Thanksgiving Egbe and all,

Sister Melissa


Sent: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 4:02 PM
To: exsa_usa@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80; A MILESTONE IN DEED!!!


My dear Sisters Egbe and Didi, this brings back memories for me. I concur with the conclusion that your mom is an amazing woman as I grew up seeing some of what you described. I am one of those whom she helped shape as a child and she was always and still is a role model. I even still remember the fateful day, playing on the stairs when the news came. May the Lord continue to give our "Aunty headmistress" the grace in these latter years to live the abundant life that is promised in the word of God.

Congratulations on this milestone.

Anita B. Etta



Sent: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 4:38 PM
To: Egbe Monjimbo




Egbe, Na only you fit make man laugh while reading and e-mail; and then cry all at the same time. As I reading this I am not sure if I should continue laughing, if I should continue crying. I am not even sure why I am crying. 


p.s please share this email with Didi my machine is acting out, and not picking up her email. I am actually writing from Bangui, and on my way to DC.


Sent: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 5:24 PM
To: Sakerettes USA
Subject: Re: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80; A MILESTONE IN DEED!!!

 Dear Egbe,
From one "Liengu mboke" sister to another, this beautiful writing has come as a Thanksgiving blessing to me as I comtemplate my ailing 67yr old mother in hospital back home and recall similar memories of her.
Faith in God keeps us going.
May God continue to bless Ma-Mummy Mbiwan and also use her to bless others.
Her character has already gone through you, Egbe and may I stretch it by stating that "you feevah ya mammy..." My guess is you are now like she was when she was your age ( or close to/ or beyond "if na true say pikin di better pass yi mammi")
Happy Thanksgiving.
Happy 80th to your mother and many happy returns.
Happy 16th Birthday to "our" dear son.
Stay blessed.
Sister Aggie.

PS It would be great to have the birthday "girl" see and read your piece.

Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile


Sent: Thursday, November 26, 2009 4:20 PM
To: exsa_usa@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80: A MILESTONE IN DEED!!! 

My dear sis Egbe, for people like me who buried Mother and father (at the same time!) sometime ago, a mile stone like "80" is one we only celebrate in our dreams. I am indeed happy for you all and it is good you are celebrating your mother publicly while she is still alive to hear. To have a parent who has been granted the grace of long life is indeed a priviledge. Enjoy.
Happy 80th Birthday Sister Miss (My favorite name from the pack!!).
Dr. J



Sent: Wednesday, November 25, 2009 4:13 PM
To: Egbe Monjimbo
Subject: Fw: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80; A MILESTONE IN DEED!!!


Dear Egbe:

Thank you for sharing this with us.  I have laughed and cried reading this as a lot of what your mother stood for resonates deeply.  If I may add I remember her as an incredibly strong woman who raised incredible ladies.  Thank God she has lived long enough to be celebrated by her last coco.  Thank you for sharing and a wonderful Thanksgiving to you and the 16 year old -- how time flies.


Sis Sue


Sent: Thursday, November 26, 2009 11:21 AM
To: emonjimbo
Cc: Ebob Tanyi; Namondo Ndando; bonanza estates

Big Bekak, you  did not include the creaming of cakes after lunch or the weeding of flower beds even though there were paid individuals to do the work. Forgot the grating of cocoyams for kwacoco or ekwang even though Simon was there to do that.We had to be properly domesticated!  

Several sessions of prayers for every available ill in the Society, every mishap, for friend and foe.

Sister Lizzy is Simply an incredible woman and I thank God She raised me.

That touch has made me and that is something no one can take away from me.

Will always thank God for those wholesome values which have made me who I am today as well as the wife and mother.

Love Always

Aunty Eyere


Sent: Thursday, November 26, 2009 10:29 AM
To: Egbe Monjimbo


Well, Etonde, I think I have learned not to be surprised by what you can do with your ink in a pen (keyboard these days).

Not only do you capture so candidly, what your Mum, just like all our Mummies (and Daddies too) did to make MEN out of all of us, you do it like the REAL MUM we all know to be imbedded in you. Congrats for having been a good student both at home and in school.

The last verse of the "poem" is my take and my challenge in raising those fortunate 'three' who are suppose to "chop my chairs". When my grade 11 Francis came home with a bill of CFA 30 000 to attend a class party, I told him over my dead body will you spend that kind of money in one evening. He reminded me that his classmates knew his status. Consequently, he missed the party for thinking he was superior to who GOD alone knows.

Please extend our warm B-day greetings to that great MUM of yours. I'll be in Victoria on the 11th of December. Could you give me her phone number so I could visit her on behalf of all of us?

Enjoy thanksgiving!


Sent: Friday, November 27, 2009 8:31 AM
To: Egbe Monjimbo;




Egbe, thank you very much. As one who was thrashed by your mum, I concur to all you posted. O! for those days when parents were parents! As Headmistress she was one to reckon with, a far-cry from  a certain Ehabe of later years. I join Cerrone to request you share her phone number. We will thank her for raising a girl who made a few men believe that "what a man can do, women can attempt.....". For that reason we have no complex before many who have beaten some of us in class. I can hear some boys murmuring...on s'en fout, et puis quoi, ahgha! c'est ca qu'on mange.....typical Cameroonians.   

 Enjoy the weekend.


Sent: Friday, November 27, 2009 4:12 PM
To: exsa_usa@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80: A MILESTONE IN DEED!!!


Egbe, Didi , Ebob and Eyere
I join you all to wish Aunty Lizzy a Happy  Birthday. While reading all these it reminds me of my late Mum. She did the same routines for us especially the every other  saturday" misaba" routine to cleanse our stomach.Which I dreaded so much since that medicine was so tasteless. Happy Birthday Aunty. Did you all realise she is EFETI. I pray and wish to be like her, Strong, Spiritual and helpful.
 Wuna name ona picking them Efeti because we be strong women see Aunty Lizzy e example.
Happy Birthday, May the Lord add you more years and you shall see your children's children children.
God Bless
Sis/Aunty Efeti 

Sent: Monday, November 30, 2009 11:27 AM
To: exsa_usa@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80; A MILESTONE IN DEED!!



A befitting tribute for a befitting Mother and Grand-Aunt. May the Lord continue to bless her abundantly and may her days continue to be numbered.


It is an honor and a pleasure to call her "Big Aunty". I remember the day I called her "Aunty" and was quickly corrected that the correct title from a little rat like myself at the time was "Big Aunty" or "Aunty-Grandma". I stock to "Big Aunty" 'cause in my young mind, I could not comprehend how one could be "Aunty" and "Grandma" at the same time to be called "Aunty-Grandma". It is truly an honor to have such a wonderful lady as family. May you all stay blessed through this holiday season.


Dolly Lambe

Joyce Tako

Sent: Monday, November 30, 2009 9:26 AM
To: exsa_usa@yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80: A MILESTONE IN DEED!!! 

Well written, we all can learn something from that, always trusting God in everything we do. May she enjoy her 80th birthday, and many more years. You all are bless having her. Happy birthday Mammy Lizzy.

Joyce Tako


From: Jackie Atang
Sent: Thursday, December 03, 2009 3:04 PM
To: EX-SakerUSA@yahoogroups.com; exsa_usa@yahoogroups.com
Cc: 'Tanyi Ebob'; 'Eyere Takor'
Subject: [exsa_usa] TURNING 80: A MILESTONE IN DEED!!! 

Here's my wish for the exemplary, inspirational,' sweet mother' octogenarian:


                             May all the days of all the years

                             That God has still in store for her

                             Be filled with every joy and grace

                             To bless her more and more;

                             May hope of heart and peace of mind

                             Beside her ever stay.

                             That's the Golden wish I have for her.



Glad that we celebrate her while she is alive - way to go Eyere, Ebob, Didi and Egbe, not forgetting the Grands. May her days be filled with Good Health and Happiness. For those of us whose moms no longer walk the earth, it's always a pleasure to celebrate with others, for the truth is that every mother is our mother too.


Peace & Blessings,

Auntie Jackie

Egbe Monjimbo September 1, 2012
MUMMY'S 80th!










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