In Cameroon, the trend is back on plastic sandals known as Batoula, Tchaka, Dschang tchouss, Matanga, Konami etc.
Fashion got a strong reminder especially as the brand Gucci brought these old forgotten shoes back in the limelight. For Gucci-branded “dschang tchouss”, be sure to have 390 Euros ready. And so, show host Pascal Pierre got riled up in a post on his Facebook page: What? FCfa 260,000 for such common shoes? Indeed “tchaka” appeared in Cameroon thanks to the company Batoula created in 1975 by Noucti Tchokwago.
Its famous plastic sandals were then very useful to brave the road, especially during the rainy season.
Generations of Cameroonians walked with these sandals until the democratisation of the shoe sector. Since then, “Ekambi” have been forgotten. And recently, they have become popular again.
Roger Samnig, leader of the urban music group X Maleya, even wore them in their video “Mon Mariage” (my wedding). He complemented his tie and suit look with white Dschang tchouss. Gucci did not invent the wheel, but the brand knows how to elevate its status. And anyway, in fashion anything can be transformed!
Monique Ngo Mayag