The Director of Administarion and Human Resources, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Barrister Abayomi Oyelola (mni), has stated that for proper national development, indigenous Nigerian languages can be used to inculcate the habit of good governance, just as he noted the need for a lingua franca.

Barrister Oyelola, who was On Air with the Executive Secretary, Dr. Barclays Ayakoroma, made this observation in Radio Link programme on Radio Nigeria.

In response to a caller’s question: Is there any relationship between indigenous language, good governance and national development, in the programme anchored by Mr. Yahaya Umaru, Barr. Oyelola said that bad governance can be corrected with indigenous language, hence putting in place good governance, which in turn brings about meaningful national development.

According him: “There is a strong relationship that exists between indigenous language, good governance and national development; the three are interrelated. Bad governance can be corrected using our indigenous language. That is when you have the people in question could talk to him in the native language. They will tell him in clear terms, with their language, that bad governance is not accepted by the community. This is to show that good governance is a thing of communal concern. No community wants to identify with bad governance and bad leaders. By taking this correction, the leader will change and his good governance will bring about proper national development.’’

On the issue of having a particular national language in a multi-ethnic nation like Nigeria, hear Oyelola: “Though an effort to develop a particular language may be difficult, we can pick similar dialects in the numerous languages we have. China made such an effort. The truth is that charity begins at home. But in our various homes, we are not promoting our indigenous languages. In schools, we teach English; perhaps the colonial experience brought about this. But the truth is that we have to teach these indigenous languages in schools. This is why NICO is concentrating and directing its energy towards indigenous languages in its Nigerian Indigenous Language Programme (NILP).’’

Nwagbo Nnenyelike
Corporate Affairs