By Anoliefo Nneka

Awka, Dec. 12, 2020 (MOI) Anambra Traditional Rulers have been urged to always interact with their people, especially the young ones in their mother tongue.

This is to help to encourage the people, especially the younger ones to be at home with their Igbo language.

Chairman, Anambra State Traditional Rulers Council, Igwe Nnaemeka Achebe, made the call when the Anambra State Chairman, Ohaneze  Ndi Igbo, Chief Damian Okeke Ogene and his team, paid the traditional rulers a courtesy visit at their Chambers at Government House, Awka.

Igwe Achebe, who is also the traditional ruler of Onitsha, noted that it was regrettable that Igbo language and culture were fast going into extinction.

“Some Igbo people are now more comfortable with other people’s languages and culture than theirs.’’

He criticised parents, guardians and caregivers, who bully their children for speaking the Igbo language, calling for attitudinal change.

Igwe Achebe observed that it was sad the Igbo language was on the decline among Igbo speaking peoples, enjoining the religious leaders and opinion leaders to join in the campaign against relegating the language and culture to the background.

The royal father also urged the Ohaneze Ndigbo state chairman and his team to ensure they conducted free, fair and credible elections in line with the Ohaneze Constitution.

The traditional ruler of Nibo, Igwe Ezike Dennis Ngene, while supporting the call, enjoined his colleagues to always speak the Igbo language and encourage the younger generation to learn the language.

He suggested that notable Igbo sons and daughters should offer scholarships and other incentives to students and teachers of Igbo language.

Igwe Ngene, then, advocated that Igbo language be made a compulsory subject for admissions into higher institutions in Igbo land.

Earlier, the State Ohaneze Chairman, Chief Ogene, promised to carry the message to their different domains as well encourage Ndi Igbo to heed the call to save Igbo language from extinction by speaking it always.

President, Association Anambra Town Unions (ASATU), Chief Alex Onukwue, cautioned that Igbo language might go extinct if nothing was done urgently to save it.

He explained that language was the most important information and communication characteristics of human beings, stressing that language was power as well as a great weapon for cultural preservation. Chief Onukwue, then, observed that the rich Igbo cultural heritage was reflected in Igbo proverbs found in emblems, songs, dances, drama, paintings, drawings, marriage, festivals and title taking. (MOI)

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