The Nigerian Army has said the teaching of Nigerian indigenous languages by the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) is in tandem with the Army’s new language policy.
Commander of the Army Headquarters Garrison, Major General James Myam disclosed this in Abuja on Friday, May 30, 2019 while giving his remarks during the opening of the maiden edition of NICO Language in the Barracks Programme at Mogadishu Barracks, Abuja, FCT.
According to him, the combined objectives of the army new language policy and the Language in the Barracks programme of NICO have enormous benefits for men and officers of the Nigerian army in the discharge of their duties.
“The objectives of the Language in the Barracks programme are in tandem with the new language policy of the Nigerian Army which seeks to promote multi-lingualism in the Army. The policy is designed to foster es-pirit de corps and better communication with the populace, enhance information gathering and civil-military relations among others”, he said.
The Chief of Staff, Defence Headquarters Garrison, Commodore Domnan Dadin Dangwel in a goodwill message reiterated the importance of language in the society saying language is a vehicle for the expression of culture and if allowed to die, the culture dies with it.
Cdre. Dangwel who commended the management and staff of NICO for bringing the language programme to the barracks, further urged the Institute not to relent at ensuring our indigenous languages do not go into extinction.
Earlier in his speech, the Acting Executive Secretary of NICO, Mr. Louis Eriomala who was represented by the Director of Orientation and Cultural Affairs, Mr. Alex Omijie said the need for the indigenous language programme was borne out of the fact that language plays a pivotal role in the promotion, preservation and propagation of culture and serves as the vehicle through which culture can be transmitted from one generation to another.
According to him, if Nigerians can embrace the NICO language training, they will understand that indigenous languages have the capacity to foster national unity and integration. He therefore called for necessary steps that will ensure our languages do not go into extinction.
Other dignitaries present at the occasion were the Garrison Training Officer, Brig. Gen. H. I. Mabeoku; Director, Garrison Education, Brig. Gen. M. A Uba; Commander, Garrison Finance & Accounts, Brig. Gen. O. F. Ogunyeye; and Mr. Segun Adegabju, NICO’s Assistant Director (Cultural Affairs).
Media Asst.-Ag. ES