- Nigerians have been urged not to jettison their local dialects at the expense of foreign languages
- The call was made on Saturday, November 21, in Lagos by the Sarkin Fulani of Lagos, Mohammed Abubakar
- The monarch said the importance of language preservation cannot be over-emphasised
Government at all levels have been urged to encourage the preservation of the people's local languages, dialects and native cultures by imposing bans on foreign cultural intrusions.
Legit.ng reports that the advice was given on Saturday, November 21, in Lagos during the public presentation of Fulfulde century educational books.
Speaking at the event, the Sarkin Fulani of Lagos and chairman, Association of Fulani chiefs, southwest, Alhaji Mohammed Abubakar Bambado II, described language as an important part of any society since it enables people to communicate and express themselves.
He stressed that when a language dies, future generations lose a vital part of the culture that is necessary to completely understand it, adding that it makes language a vulnerable aspect of the cultural heritage.
The monarch added that when the people's language is preserved, they have essentially captured in essence their history.
"Many governments in some parts of the world are known to have made bold attempts to protect their native cultures by imposing bans on what they declare to be foreign cultural intrusions. Language is an important part of any society because it enables people to communicate and express themselves.
"When a language dies out, future generations lose a vital part of the culture that is necessary to completely understand it. This makes language a vulnerable aspect of our cultural heritage, which makes it compelling for us to preserve it.
"Today’s historic event is a bold step as we present to the public the outcome of research works that gave birth to these set of books on Fulfulde Language. You might want to ask why are these books coming at this point in time? The answer is not far-fetched: when we preserve our language we have essentially captured in essence the history of our people.
Alhaji Abubakar said when the remaining fluent speakers of the language who are generally the older members of the community pass on such a language is no longer being taught to the children of the community.
He said it is also important to note that when a language dies, the knowledge of and ability to understand the culture who spoke it is threatened because the teachings, customs, oral traditions and other inherited knowledge are no longer transmitted among native speakers.
The monarch added:
"What is the way out? Preservation, which can be achieved through written books made available to younger generations which could encourage them to learn, read and speak the language as they grow. They will also in turn teach their children the language as well. This cycle of learning not only keeps aglow the torch of knowledge about native literature and linguistics but also help in lighting the way into the future.
"As the host here today and part of this historic moment; the public presentation of Fulfulde century educational books. I congratulate the researchers and scholars who have worked round the clock to nurture this project from conception and right through the testy periods in between to the ultimate presentation of these crisp and fresh copies of the publications for the reading pleasure of target audience which includes me, you and everyone desirous to learn Fulfulde as a language."
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) condemned the suit challenging the Arabic inscription on the Nigerian currency (naira).
It was reported that the group was reacting to a suit filed by a Lagos-based lawyer, Malcolm Omirhobo.
According to MURIC’s director and founder, Professor Ishaq Akintola, Omirhobo is naïve and pedestrian given the fact that Arabic is a language just like Nigeria's lingua franca, English language.
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