The Executive Secretary, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, has urged parents to encourage their children to be part of the one-month intensive Nigerian Indigenous Language Programme (NILP), being organized by National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO).
Dr. Ayakoroma, who made this call on Bush House Nigeria, a radio programme on Kapital FM 92.9, Abuja, said instead of the children staying at home, playing video games during the holidays, they could attend the language programme, adding that it will keep them busy, add value to their holiday, even as it will help them learn not only the indigenous language but diverse Nigerian cultures.
The ES stated that the original idea of the programme was to occupy children during holidays but that along the line, adults were also encouraged, because, as he put it: “A lot of people are interested in learning Nigerian indigenous languages. It is very important for everybody, both parents and children. If we learn to speak our languages, a lot of barriers will be broken at the family and national levels, in the sense that it will make us understand each other as a people in a country with multiple languages. This will happen because the moment we understand our languages, we understand our cultures and our worldviews. Then, at the family level, those into inter-tribal marriages will benefit, because the wife could learn the husband’s language, and the husband could learn the wife’s language, likewise the children.”
He further asserted: “The truth about learning a language is a matter of interest. The Speaker of Kwara State House of Assembly, Barrister Razak Atunwa, has interest in speaking Hausa language and told NICO to arrange a private teacher for his family, so that he will learn Hausa with his wife. It is a question of creating time in what you have interest in and you will learn it. The opening ceremonies will begin from 2nd August to 5th September, 2012, while the one-month intensive programme starts from 2nd August to 31st August, 2012, in the six geopolitical zonal offices of NICO, in addition to Lagos and Abuja. The languages to be taught include, Efik, Fulfide, Gbagyi, Hausa, Igbo, Izon, Nupe, Tiv and Yoruba. The fee is N10.000 only. You agree with me that N10.000 is not much, because we will do documentation and give out some materials. It is a social service we have to render to harness Nigerian culture for national development.”