Mismanagement of Indigenous Language Diversity, Bane of Nigeria’s Development -RUN DVC - Paul Ukpabio's Blog


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Monday, 7 June 2021

Mismanagement of Indigenous Language Diversity, Bane of Nigeria’s Development -RUN DVC

Professor Adebola Adebileje, Professor of English Language Education and Applied Linguistics, Redeemer's University, Ede, during the 8th in the series of the Inaugural Lecture delivered by her

The mismanagement of the indigenous language diversity has been identified as the bane of Nigeria’s development by Mrs. Adebola Adebileje, a Professor of English Language Education and Applied Linguistics at Redeemer’s University, Ede, Osun State, during her presentation of the 8th Inaugural Lecture Series of the institution, recently.

Speaking on the Inaugural Lecture entitled: Advancing Multilingual Education: Pathway to Globalizing the Nigerian Linguistic Landscape, she stated that despite the fact that the Standard Nigerian English variety is the yardstick used for English-speaking countries in West Africa, only a few Nigerians speak the English Language intelligibly while the country still has multitudes who cannot communicate in their mother tongues.

According to her, it implies that as a nation, we are neither here nor there in developing our indigenous languages that God has given us in abundance.
Professor Adebileje, who is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Redeemer’s University, lamented that Nigerian language diversity that is meant to be our strength is now becoming our major weakness as a nation. She highlighted the need for the governments at all levels to begin the gradual process of ensuring excellence in the official applications of all the languages that God has blessed us within the country.

She recommended the working knowledge of an indigenous language as an indispensable tool for national development which will help Nigeria to better manage the numerous ethno-religious crises facing the country.

She noted that the decline in the ability of the young people between the age of 15 and 25 years to speak fluently one or more indigenous languages has serious repercussions for sustainable national development.

Adebileje canvassed for the overhauling of the current national policy on education to promote multilingual education at all levels and the training of language teachers across the multilingual landscape for educational purposes. She advised that government must encourage parents and teachers to allow the use and application of many indigenous languages at home and in the classroom at all levels.

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