NIGERIA. Niger State: “Learning the Nupe language is described as a privilege and right of every Nupe speaking person as it helps in projecting its culture and putting it forth for sustainability,” Founder/Director Indigenous Language Learning Center (ILLEC), Adamu Idris Manarakis, said in an interview with Transcontinental Times.
The founder of ILLEC added that learning the native language must be seen as a means of the revitalization of the cultural identity of indigenous people and it must be encouraged at all costs.
Importance of the language
Manarakis further stated that the language is very relevant because it allows the general public and other cultures to understand the importance of speaking in their native tongue.
“Speaking native language alone shows the diversity between your Culture and other cultures in the society, and also showcases tradition and their importance everywhere we find ourselves,” Manarakis said.
“The ethnic group alone is enough to be a country on its own, but I keep on wondering and asking why we don’t care about learning and speaking to promote our cultural heritage,” he added.
Origin of Nupe people
“The land is called KinNupe. God created them and made each and every one of them who they are, but we failed to realize our importance,” Manarakis noted.
Manarakis believes that the idea of making the native language a general speaking dialect among all is a powerful move. However, people should remain committed to learning and adopting the language.
Idris Adamu Manarakis
Manarakis, who is a renowned scholar, has written books in the local dialects, such as Nupe Mathematics and Nupe Grammar.
“I have over 15 Nupe books unpublished,” Manarakis said.
“I came recently seeking help to enhance the existing local Language Learning Centres, and to help in paying tuition fees for our children to start Pre-Nigeria Certificate of Education (Pre-NCE) Nupe Language but only a few well to do individuals assisted. That is not encouraging at all.”
The birth of ILLEC
ILLEC which started its class in November 2016 has witnessed tremendous achievement as it has over 70 students studying the indigenous language in the state college of Education.