Meet Aremu A. Adeola, Jr., Yoruba language activist

Photo provided by Aremu A. Adeola, Jr.

In 2019 as part of a social media campaign to celebrate linguistic diversity online, African language activists and advocates will be taking turns managing the @DigiAfricanLang Twitter account to share their experiences with the revitalization and promotion of African languages. This profile post is about Aremu A. Adeola, Jr. (@aremuadeolajr) and what he plans to discuss during his week as host.

Rising Voices: Please tell us about yourself.

My name is Aremu Anuoluwapo Adeola jr., I'm an undergraduate student of the Department of Linguistics, African and Asian Studies, University of Lagos. I'm the creator of the First African Indigenous crossword game, YOOBA LINGO. I also intern at as a lexicographer and also the Founder of Aremu Language Consult.

RV: What is the current status of your language on the internet and offline?

The status of the Yoruba Language online is beginning to reach the average level, with various resource and conversations being held in the language on various social media platforms and also seeing young people trying to contribute their quota towards the preservation of the language through the internet has really been amazing and commendable.

The language has always been great offline with so many materials about the language and also proper documentations about the culture and tradition. Having said that, there are still many things that can be documented. We still have a lot of things to touch.

We still have a lot to do, but we are surely where we use to be. The language has advanced in a way it the other.

RV: On what topics do you plan to focus during the week that you’ll manage the @DigiAfricanLang Twitter account?

My focus will be on Broadcasting terms (political terms and few others) in the language and how it affects need delivery. I'll love to talk on the Yoruba numerals, Yoruba names, Language policy, and implementation in Nigeria and how it affects the Yoruba language. Yoruba literature and folksongs among many others.

RV: What are the main motivations for your digital activism for your language? What are your hopes and dreams for your language?

The zeal to ensure that the language goes around the world especially to Yoruba native speakers in the diaspora is one of the drives I've got for digital activism. The internet, especially the social media is a great tool to make that possible.

My dream for the language is vast, I want to see a non-diluted Yoruba Language be used and commanded by younger generation just as they command English language. Our government needs to do more with regards language policy implementation.

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