The Managing Director of Goge Africa Ltd., Mrs Nneka Moses, on Wednesday urged the Federal Government to make indigenous languages compulsory in secondary schools.
Moses, who made the plea in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, said the policy would foster development.
She said the policy would save indigenous languages from going into extinction.
NAN reports that Goge Africa is an outfit that promotes African arts and culture.
Moses said that indigenous languages were noticeably going into extinction, due to the indifference of people in communicating in such languages.
She urged parents to speak their local languages regularly so that their children could learn from them.
“The country would achieve a greater level of development using the mother tongue,’’ Moses said.
She expressed regrets that `westernisation’ had eroded indigenous culture, adding that everybody wanted to behave like a foreigner, “leaving his cultural heritage behind.
“The youth prefer to speak foreign languages and dress like foreigners. This is not good for our culture.
“Nigerians, both at home and in the Diaspora should be proud of their culture,’’ Moses said.
She urged educational institutions and tourism training centres to inculcate in their curriculum courses that would promote indigenous culture.
Moses said that some of the languages to be thought in schools should include: Yoruba, Igbo, Hausa and other major ethnic languages.
She said that culture could also help to preserve the nation’s unity.
Moses said her company had taken different measures to preserve Nigeria’s rich cultural heritage locally and overseas through several awareness campaigns.
She urged parents to play major roles in ensuring that their children were abreast of indigenous culture.
“Culture goes along with language because language plays a vital role in the promotion, preservation and propagation of culture, “ Moses said.
She described language as a tool for the transmission of the nation’s cultural heritage.
“Nigerians should promote their cultural heritage and identify with their culture by partaking in activities that will help promote the nation’s culture and development,’’ Moses said. (NAN)