The National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO) has expressed determination to sustain its new initiative to sensitize corps members across the federation towards fostering interest in learning our indigenous languages.

Addressing the corps members at the 3rd edition of the Nigerian Indigenous Language Programme (NILP) held at the NYSC Orientation Camp in Kubwa, Abuja, the Executive Secretary/CEO of NICO, Otunba Biodun Ajiboye said the initiative aims to promote indigenous languages among Nigerian youths.

Ajiboye who was represented by Mrs Mfongang Helen announced that the programme will offer online indigenous language training for the corps members in Hausa, Igbo, and Yoruba languages, using platforms such as WhatsApp and WPS for instruction.

“This initiative aims to equip participants with basic communication skills in their chosen languages by the end of the four-week training period. To ensure quality learning, the Institute has enlisted professionally qualified resource persons to conduct the classes”.

“A Google form will be made available at the conclusion of the programme to gather feedback from participants”.

“Additionally, there are plans to propose the establishment of NICO Indigenous Language Clubs at the Community Development Service (CDS) level. These clubs would provide a continuous learning platform, enhancing corps members’ proficiency in the languages”.

“Corps members are encouraged to fill out the distributed forms, indicating their language preferences and provide their phone numbers and email addresses for further communication. Participants can choose up to two languages to learn during the programme”.

“This initiative represents a significant step in preserving and promoting Nigeria’s rich linguistic heritage while enhancing the cultural competence of its youth,” Ajiboye emphasized.

Earlier, the NYSC State Coordinator for FCT, Mrs Shokpeka Winifred had explained that during the orientation camp, series of lectures are held to refresh the corps members to prepare them and build their capacity to dream and actualize those dreams.

“We offer language lectures because we have discovered that many Nigerian youths, perhaps due to intertribal marriages no longer speak our native languages. At NYSC, we have language classes to ensure even basic greetings and market bargaining skills are taught. When you can communicate with someone in their language, it fosters a sense of togetherness.”

Mrs Winifred encouraged the participants to take the training seriously and also pass the knowledge unto their younger ones aimed at instilling positive change in the society.

Caleb Nor
Media Asst.-ES
NICO, Abuja