Don advocates indigenous English language for students assessment

Temitope Mustapha, Abuja

Professor Gabriel Egbe from Veritas University, Abuja

Stakeholders in Nigerian Education Sector have been challenged to re-define standard of measuring students’ performance in public examinations.

Academics are also urged to develop indigenous English Language as a test measurement for students’ assessment in qualifying examination.

A Professor of English Language, Gabriel Egbe from Veritas University, gave the charge in Abuja during a news briefing heralding the first inaugural lecture of the University with the theme, “Of New English and New Literacies.”

The Professor advocated for examination of students in Nigeria in what he called ‘the Nigerian standard English’ stressing that English Language is an international language not owned by any country.

Erroneous belief
He disagreed with what he described as an ‘erroneous’ belief that the standard of education in Nigeria is falling, arguing that this was a wrong assessment of education in the country.

“As an academic, I do not believe that education standards are falling generally.

“People say education standards are falling because we measure standard from a very skewed perspective,”Professor Egbe said. 

Plurality of English
According to the Professor, his lecture exposes the plurality of English language and no one owns any language except those who speak the language.

He said further that Nigerian standard of English cannot be drawn from British or American English as no language is inferior to another language.

“No one has the prerogative or the birth right to determine what is good or bad English, and I must say that what we speak in Nigeria as Nigerian English is not inferior to any brand of English anywhere in the world.

“And so my lecture would reveal to us that the concept of new English has created the plurality of the English language to the extent that we can no longer talk about ‘the English Language..What we need is to have the appropriate literacy to appropriate the English we use whether in school or at home for living and for learning. What is important for us in Nigeria is to develop that English and use it for the purpose we want to use it for and no longer to see English as a colonial language but as a language of its own rights,” he said.

PhD programmes
Meanwhile, the Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Hycinth Ichoku said that the National Universities Commission, NUC, has granted approval to Veritas University, Abuja to commence PhD programmes in Political Science and Economics.

Professor Hycinth said the programmes would commence in the 2019/2020 academic session, stressing that the university has started admissions into the programmes.


Olajumoke Adeleke