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Association Wants Revival Of National Language Policy

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The Linguistics Association of Nigeria (LAN), has called on the Federal Government to revive the moribund National Language Policy Project which was mid-wifed by the Nigeria Educational Research and Development Council seven years ago.
The National President of LAN, Prof Harrison Adeniyi made the call while presenting his address during the opening ceremony at the just concluded 30th conference of the association held at the post-graduate hall of the Ignatius Ajuru University of Education, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, last Tuesday.
Adeniyi said the measures would help to develop indigenous languages that would serve as official means of communication in the country.
According to him, “as at today, despite having over 500 indigenous languages, Nigeria has no national language policy of its own. This, to us, is not good for the advancement of our nation.
“As we know, no nation can rise above the level of development of its indigenous languages and the more we toy with these languages, the farther we are from the technological development”.
The LAN president urged government at all levels to take a cue from Lagos State that has taken a giant stride in promoting the Yoruba Language, “just last October, a bill was passed into law, the law among others, makes the teaching of Yoruba language compulsory in all schools both private and public schools in the state by including its core subject at all levels”.
Also speaking, frontline female politician in the country and former presidential candidate, Dr Sarah Jubril said there was urgent need to utilise language effectively in order to convey information without any problem.
Dr Jubril, who presented the lead paper on the theme: “Language, Literature, Culture and Conflict”, averred that citizens should adhere to the obedience on government policies that would promote peace in the society adding that there was urgent need of establishment of community civic development centres in the society.
Earlier in his address of welcome, the Vice Chancellor of IAUOE, Prof Ozo Mercuri Ndimele used the opportunity to thank Nigeria National Universities Commission (NUC), for its support to the university in its quest to advance the scope and capacity of the institution.

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Education

Group Warns Against Underage Drinking In Educational Institutions

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As concerns grow over underage drinking, especially among young students in higher institutions, the Beer Sectoral Group (BSG) has disclosed that its ‘Smashed Project,’ advocacy against underage alcohol drinking, has impacted over 65,000 adolescents in 35 institutions across the country in the last five years.
BSG Chairman, Baker Magunda, stated this at the launch of the fourth edition of the smashed programme in Abuja, as part of its renewed commitment to addressing the menace of underage drinking in Nigeria.
Smashed project is a programme of BSG, an umbrella body for leading brewing companies in Nigeria, who are members of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN). They include, Guinness, Nigeria Breweries and Ab-In Bev.
Smashed is a global project that started in 2005, with the aim of using drama and theatre to help adolescents understand the dangers of alcohol to their health.
Speaking, Magunda noted that the renewed effort is aimed at furthering the objective of the Smashed project in line with global strategy to reduce the harmful effects of underage consumption of alcohol.
“Every time young people experience the core messages of the smashed project through drama, it sticks because the message is clear and it also makes them avoid the social pressures of trying alcohol before they are of age. At BSG, we are committed to this and we will continue to invest in this programme,” Magunda said.

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Education

Expert Harps On Importance Of Indigenous Languages

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A Professor of French and Translation Studies at the Ignatius Ajuru University of Education, Rumuolumeni,  Port Harcourt, Prof. Priye Enemi Iyalla-Amadi, has identified the importance of  indigenous languages  on the development of technology, and called on African leaders to take advantage of the multiplicity of languages to advance technology in Africa.
Amadi stated this while delivering her lecture at the 40th Inaugural Lecture Series of the institution titled: “Translation As Tool For Indigenous Language Engineering: The African Experiment,” last Thursday in Port Harcourt.
“Translation as a communicative tool, should serve as a needed bridge to provide a platform for accessing the world technological heritage of which we are all a part. I am charging you my fellow African speakers, that the technological future is here, so let’s own it linguistically.
“We have to be able to translate our languages, expressly using these languages to visualise what is being expressed. The power to invent like other countries across the globe lies in our ability to be able to understand and translate our indigenous languages,” Amadi added.
She lamented that Nigeria as an Anglophone country, has thrown away her various indigenous languages, making everyone disintegrated instead of united through their various indigenous languages that would have helped form a strong positive force in language translation as well as world affairs technologically.
“There is nothing wrong with a child to be able to speak six different languages. It is high time parents stop speaking English to their children, while at home. Leave English Language for their school teachers and speak your languages to them while they are home because this practice forms a strong family bond which finally transcends to national unity.”
She described Translation as the cross cultural, cross national and inter-disciplinary linguistic tool per excellence, saying that it can be used as a potent tool  for language engineering to better express thoughts, desires and linguistic goals of speakers of various languages, adding that through translation, members of different races, and tongues can unite to formulate policies and strategies aimed at the communal good.

By: Susan Serekara-Nwikhana

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Education

School Advises On Children’s Intellectual Dev

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The Director, Spring Lake School, Mrs Judith Usiakpor, has said the cognitive and psychological development of learners should be considered in teaching.
A statement signed by the school during its graduation ceremony said that the school ensured the provision of teaching and learning aids that would aid the development of learners’ cognitive and psychological tendencies.
It read, ‘‘Spring Lake School, a faith-based institution with a niche to providing exceptional day care services and after-school programmes for children between one to five years of age, recently graduated their first intake in grand style at their Oniru- Lekki auditorium.
‘The Director, Mrs. Judith Usiakpor, while speaking at the fifth year graduation of the school, reiterated the school’s commitment towards contributing selflessly in the role of moulding children cognitively and psychologically as well.
‘‘She also expressed her gratitude to all the pioneer parents who have come this far with them.”
A  lawyer and parent, Mrs Zulei Momodu, appreciated the Spring Lake School for the exemplary turnaround job they did for the kids.

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