The effects of Governmental and institutional language attitudes
abdul at December 28th, 2012
A country’s government may have an explicit language use policy for its multiple languages. At one extreme, one language may be designated as the sole official language of the country, while all others are condemned. At the other extreme, all languages of a nation may receive equal official status. Equal legal status, however, does not guarantee language maintenance and long term vitality of a language.
Unesco Intangible Cultural Heritage Unit’s Ad Hoc Expert Group on Endangered Languages (2003) has rightly noted that the maintenance, promotion, or abandonment of non-dominant languages may be dictated by the dominant Linguistic culture, be it regional or national. The linguistic ideology of a state may inspire linguistic minorities to mobilize their populations towards the maintenance of their languages, or may force them to abandon them which is currently the case of Igala Language. These linguistic attitudes can be a powerful force both for promotion and loss of their languages.
The Federal Government of Nigeria has positive statements about Nigerian languages whether majority or minority languages.
But the question is; was that policy been effected as in the case of Igala language?
Back in the eighties and Nineties, we received lessons on how to read and write Igala Language in schools, but today, I am not sure it exists.