You know many times I want to post, but then I have told myself I will stop seeing problems and if I Identify a problem, I must also identify the solution before I open my mouth or write about it.
Gov. Ambode of Lagos State recently announced thats all schools in Lagos must adhere to a Yoruba language day- Wednesdays every week where the entire day is to be conducted in Yoruba; from assembly to Closing.
Why anybody assumed this made sense or fosters national Unity is somewhat beyond me. I am half Yoruba and I do not believe the policy was well thought out. First of all they cannot attempt to copy the Finnish or Chinese system which have one “unanimous” language – which may have variations based on regional influences. Nigeria is a heterogeneous culture with over 200 ethnic groups and as such has no unifying language other than English. So I think the policy is dead on arrival.
Mandating proficiency in one of the local more popular languages (given limited access to language teachers of certain ethnicities) would have been more appropriate- possibly cross enrolling students. Meaning encouraging Yoruba children to learn Igbo and vice versa. You may be able to build more tolerance and Unity that way.
Mandating everyone to learn Yoruba because we are in Lagos is flawed. Lagos while being of Yoruba origin, no longer belongs to the Yorubas only. I say this as a Lagosian. If we remove the GDP contributed by other ethnic groups to Lagos’ GDP will it still be a mega economy? Somehow I doubt it.
If we want cultural preservation, the right approach is to ensure we present as much of a balanced view as we can to our children. A mandate for Yoruba only day does not work. What does civic education or social studies comprise of? We are culturally rich enough with materials to pass on and make actual learning fun for the kids.
I respectfully disagree with the Yoruba day agenda and believe a more positive approach would be to cross enroll the children in language and culture classes for there to be unity. I think they got it wrong on this one.
Sorry for my absence these days- I emotionally alternate between asking why I still blog and If I have anything valid to say….I am also not crazy about Instagram blogging and have been considering just leaving it all alone. Maybe it’s old age or just the blues…who knows.