Western African Submitted Surnames

Western African names include those from Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo. See also about African names.
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Submitted names are contributed by users of this website. The accuracy of these name definitions cannot be guaranteed.
ABDELLAHI Western African, Wolof
From the given name ABDELLAH (chiefly Mauritanian).
Possibly an Islamic male name or surname as well as Nigerian.
ABIOYE Western African, Yoruba
From the given name ABIOYE.
Meaning unknown.
ACHAMPONG Western African
Variant of the Ashanti surname Acheamphong, meaning "destined for greatness".
Means "one crown has become two" in Yoruba.
AGBAJE Nigerian, Yoruba
Meaning unknown. A bearer is ADEWALE Akinnuoye-Agbaje (1967-), an English actor and model of Yoruba Nigerian descent.
AGRINYA Nigerian (Rare)
Means "warrior" in the Nigerian language of Yala. It was an earned name.
AGU Igbo
Agu is an Igbo surname; the word Agu means Tiger in Igobo language.
AGUMANU Igbo, Trinidadian Creole
its an last name and first name that comes from an Igbo tribe in Trinidad
Meaning unknown.
Meaning unknown.
ALIOUNE Western African
From the given name ALIOUNE.
Meaning unknown.
Meaning unknown.
ANNAN Western African, Akan
Means "fourth-born child" in Akan.
ARCHIBONG Efik, Ibibio
of Efik Origin, originally pronounced asibong but changed by the british to Archibong, meaning Kings Father, Kings Friend, (amasi Obong)
ASANTE Western African, Akan
From the ethnic name of the Ashanti, a sub-ethnic group of the Akan from southern Ghana. The name possibly means "warlike" in the Twi language.
AZI Afizere
Azi is actually pronounced Azīh which means "Unending, in ended father of many generations" it is named after children believed to become the origin or source of lasting families.
BABA Nigerian, Yoruba, Western African
From an honourific title used to denote a father, wise man, or an elder.
Meaning unknown.
BOLAJI Nigerian
This surname is very common in Nigeria. Possibly taken from a word in one of the Nigerian tribes languages.
BOUSHAB Western African
Used in Mauritania.
CEESAY Western African, Manding
Gambian surname of Mandinka origin, which originally indicated a descendant of a marabout, i.e. a West African Muslim teacher and religious leader.... [more]
CHÉRIF Arabic (Maghrebi), Western African
Form of SHARIF used in North Africa and parts of French-influenced western Africa.
CISSÉ Western African, Manding (Francized)
Variant of CEESAY used in parts of French-influenced western Africa.
COULIBALY Western African, Manding
Francization of Bambara kulu bari meaning "without a canoe", referring to someone who crossed a river or another body of water without the use of a canoe.
DABIE Akan (Latinized, Modern)
Dabie was originally from the Bono people of Ghana and it is portrayed as a royal name amongst the people. Many individuals who have inherited this name are Chiefs. It's meaning is someone who's a Warrior.
DAMBE Hausa, Western African
Given from a martial art from the Hausa people.
DAREGO Nigerian (Rare)
Meaning unknown.
DIALLO Western African
A common name throughout West Africa, it is the French transcription of a surname of Fula origin.
DIOP Western African, Wolof
From Joob, the name of a Wolof clan, which is derived from a totemic word meaning "black craned swan" or "peacock".
Meaning unknown.
DOUCOURÉ Western African, Soninke
Meaning uncertain.
Meaning unknown.
EJIOFOR Western African, Igbo
Means "one who acts in good faith" in Igbo. A famous bearer is British actor Chiwetel Ejiofor (1977-).
EL BECHIR Western African
Means "the BECHIR", derived from the given name BASHIR. This surname is mainly used in Mauritania.
EL MOCTAR Western African
Derived from the given MOCTAR, a variant of MOKHTAR. A bearer is Jidou El Moctar (1985–), a Mauritanian runner.
ETIENAM Nigerian, Ibibio (?), Spanish (Caribbean, ?)
This is a name which originates from the Calabar/Akwa Ibom region of southeastern Nigeria. It means "a doer of good, or benevolent". It is also found in Spanish-speaking regions of the Caribbean such as Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, and Cuba (El Oriente) which have populations of people of Ibibio/Efik decent known as "Carabali".
Meaning unknown.
Name used mostly by South Eastern Nigerians
IWUCHUKWU Igbo, African
It means God's covenant is unwavering. This name is a bearer is a testimony of God's command. This ia a Christian name.
JALLOH Western African
Probably a derivative of Arabic JALIL.
JEDOU Western African
Found in Mauritania.
JOOF Serer
The surname Joof (English spelling in Gambia) whit its derivatives Juuf / Juf (Seereer proper) or Diouf (French spelling in Senegal and Mauritania) is a Senegambian surname found amongst the Seereer people of Senegal, the Gambia and Mauritania... [more]
KPORARO Nigerian (Rare)
The name Kporaro translates into the English language as "PROGRESS" (literally Kpo which is "Go", Ra which is "OF" and Aro which is "FRONT" in which case the Ra implies "For" or "Of" thus Kporaro is literally "Go Of Front" or more properly "Move Forward")... [more]
Meaning unknown.
MALICK Indian, Bengali, Pakistani, Western African
From the Arabic ملك (malik) meaning "king, sovereign, monarch" (see MALIK (1)), used by Indian Hindus and Muslims.
MANU Western African, Akan
Means "second-born child" in Akan.
MAOULOUD Western African
Derived from Arabic مولود‎‎ (mawlud) meaning "born, newborn", used to refer to the مولد (Mawlid) observance of the birth of the Islamic Prophet MUHAMMAD (chiefly Mauritanian).
M'BARECK Western African
Derived from Arabic مُبَارَك (mubārak) meaning "blessed, fortunate, lucky" (chiefly Mauritanian).
M'BEIRICK Western African
Most likely a variant of M’Bareck.
MENSAH Western African, Akan
Means "third-born son" in Akan.
MESSOUD Western African
From the given name MAS'UD; used in Mauritania.
MIKEL English, Nigerian
From the given name MIKEL.
N’DRI Western African (Rare)
The meaning behind N’Dri is “ Nearby the river “
Means, "see".
NIANG Western African, Wolof
Refers to a member of the Deme, a Wolof clan whose symbol is the donkey.
NKRUMAH Western African
It is of Akan origin meaning "Great".
ODERASAK Yoruba (Rare)
It is Yoruba mispronunciation of the the name Oscar. It was a middle name that became a last name.
Odoemene roots from Nigeria. It has branched onward to America, and multiple other countries. It literally means 'yellow reluctance' in Igbo.
Meaning unknown.
OKOTURO Nigerian
A surname most popular in Nigeria; meaning currently unknown.
"Olatunji" is a Yoruba surname and a given name meaning "Wealth awakes again".
ONYILOGWU Nigerian (Rare), Igbo (Rare)
Possibly means "he who is invulnerable to dark magic" in Igbo.
ORELIAS Nigerian (Latinized, Modern, Rare), Italian (Tuscan), Venetian
Means "golden", when coupled with a first name becomes "the golden". Varied from Orelia, "golden".... [more]
OSEI Western African
Very popular surname in Ghana.
OSY Nigerian
From Imo, Nigeria
OUBEID Western African
Mauritanian variant of OBEID (see UBAYD).
OWUSU Western African, Akan
Means "strong-willed, determined" in Akan.
ỌYÁWÁLÉ Yoruba, Nigerian
Means "the river goddess came home" in Yoruba.
Meaning unknown.
A name from the history of the urhobo culture. It's been noted that the name indicate strength and is the name attached to it. The important vice of the tradition. Leads trivial matters in hope for liberty.
"The way of the rich man" or "The way of prosperity"
QUARTEY Western African, Ga
Ga surname of unknown meaning.
Meaning unknown.
Meaning unknown.
SELASSIE Ethiopian, Amharic, Western African
Possibly means "trinity" in Amharic. A notable bearer was Haile Selassie (1892-1975), the regent and emperor of Ethiopia from 1930 to 1974.
Meaning unknown.
Meaning unknown.
Meaning unknown.
SOUEIDI Western African
Mainly found in Mauritania.
SOUEILEM Western African
Meaning unknown—this surname is mainly found in Mauritania.
Meaning unknown.
TANGARA Western African, Manding
Malian Bambara surname of unknown meaning.
Means, "father's love". Has its history from Tiv origin. Its a common name amongst the Tiv people of Nigeria.
TOURÉ Western African
Probably derived from tùùré meaning "elephant" in the Soninké language.
TRAORÉ Western African, Manding
Francization of Manding Tarawele, which is of uncertain etymology. It was originally used by 13th-century Malian warrior Tiramakhan and possibly means "going to call it".
Meaning unknown.
Means, "Remember the father". Father also used in the context of God.
UTHMAN Nigerian
From the given name UTHMAN.
UWEM Ibibio, Efik, Anang
Meaning "Life". It originates from the Efik, Ibibio and Anang tribes of Cross River state, Nigeria which has now been divided with the Ibibios and Anang people in the newly formed Akwa Ibom state... [more]
Meaning unknown.
ZEIDANE Western African
Mauritanian variant of ZIDANE.
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