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Fadeyi Oluwaseun
Ladoke Akintola University Ogbomosho
B.tech Marketing Management
200Level, Nigeria.

The Centre for International Advanced and Professional Studies (CIAPS) has urged parents and teachers that prevent their wards from exchanging ideas in the mother tongues to desist from such act.

According to the group, the devastating effect of such negligence of teaching and learning of indigenous languages, especially Yoruba language, on children and adults, today could result in loss of identity.

Speaking at the unveiling of a book “Owe’, Yoruba by Proverbs,” Prof. Anthony Kila, CIAPS Director and author, in Lagos recently berated parents, who out of fear and ignorance, only expose their children to English language with the hope that they may get good schools and good jobs later in life.

While calling for the teaching and learning of Yoruba language, Prof. Kila noted that “when a child is exposed to a language at an early age, his mental muscle is being given more exercise to do. And it’s a known fact that people who are bilingual at an early age tend to do better in life.”

The author, who advocated for the establishment of a Yoruba Cultural Institute or Nigerian Cultural Institute all over the world just like it is done by Germany and France, advised that rather than raise anxiety over possible loss of our indigenous language, “We should come together, sit down and strategise on what to do about it.”

He noted: “CIAPS intends to organise a meeting of various writers, artists and creators of African culture to sit together to see what can be done in order to promote our culture and language.”

Prof. Kila, who described the book as an epistemological tool, noted that it is a way of using proverbs to discover a society, people and culture, saying that proverbs are very useful to the Nigerian society.

According to him, “The ideas we express using proverbs are the events that happened around us. What we say about them is what we think and the way we present them is our art and our poetry.”

While urging Yoruba and Nigerians to embrace culture generally, the author said that “the more cultured you are, the more you are likely to know your language. It is a cultured man or woman who knows and understands things better.”

Also at the event, a former Director-General, Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), Prof. Bola Akinterinwa, emphasised the need to lay emphasis on Yoruba dialect as an international language.

He described the book as a way of using the Yoruba language as a means of communication for information and culture transfer.

The author, who also blamed the Nigerian elites over failure to establish the culture, lamented that “what we have now is a generation that does not know its culture.

“We need to get together and have a clear idea that we need to present the culture in an attractive manner. We need to find out what we can do with the Yoruba culture and consciously and organically promote it.”

Source: https://www.independent.ng/ciaps-seeks-return-of-yoruba-language-culture-in-schools/

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