The Manager of the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria at the Margaret Ekpo International Airport in Calabar, Mr. Sunday Ayodele, on Thursday said that pupils of FAAN Nursery and Primary School would be encouraged to learn indigenous languages in order to sustain their various cultures.
Ayodele said that the management of the school would be encouraged to employ teachers well versed in local languages.
He said this during the 2016/2017 Cultural Fiesta organised for pupils of the school in Calabar, Cross River State.
The event witnessed cultural displays in Efik, Ibibio, Yoruba, Igbo and Hausa languages by pupils of the school.
While some of the learners were made to recite folk tales and dance to songs in local lyrics, others recalled their historical origins in poems.
According to Ayodele, indigenous languages should not be allowed to go into extinction.
He said, “Culture is our way of life and it embodies all that we stand for as a people. We will be seen not to be teaching the pupils anything if we abandon our languages and embrace foreign culture. We need to encourage the growth of our culture even while embracing modern technologies.
“One of the things we will do is to get indigenous teachers back to the classroom because I believe that deeper meanings are got when local languages are spoken. Our languages are superior, so we have to go back to the basics.”
Headmistress of the school, Mrs. Mercy Emenike, said parents had critical roles to play in passing on indigenous cultural values to their children.