Written by Godfrey AKON

Nigerian languages still under threat - FG

Again, the federal government has raised an alarm over the un-abetting decline on the use of mother tongue amongst Nigerians, stating that Nigerian indigenous languages were still under the threat of extinction.

Minister of State for Education, Prof. Anthony Anwukah, stated this in Abuja at the 2016 International Mother Language Day celebration.

Anwukah, who was represented by his special adviser, Technical, Prof. Godswill Obioma, also noted the sharp drop in the number of those that are able to read or write in their mother tongues.

“Our youths, especially those living in the urban centres hardly communicate in their mother tongue. I believe that the best possible way to give our children good knowledge of history, values and tradition is to ensure that our children read and write in their own local language,” he said.

The minister emphasised that language is the most potent instrument for preserving and developing a people’s cultural heritage.

He said the celebration rightly coincides with the ministry’s effort towards ensuring quality in the teaching of Nigerian languages at various levels of education, adding that Nigerian languages taught in schools have become veritable instruments for consolidating language skills and other life coping competences.

The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural organisation, UNESCO, proclaimed the 21st February of every year as the International Mother Language Day in commemoration of the massacre of Benghali speaking people of Indonesia for defending their mother tongue.

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