The Nigerian government has reiterated its commitment to the teaching of French language in Nigerian schools, saying being multi-lingual will give Nigerians more opportunities in the international labour market.
The Minister of State for Education, Anthony Anwukah, said this on Thursday in Abuja at the ceremony for the closure of Nigeria’s Third Funding Agreement with France for the teaching of French language in Nigerian higher institutions.
The agreement was signed by the Ambassador of France in Nigeria and former Minister of Education, Ibrahim Shekarau, on May 15, 2015.
Mr. Anwukah said Nigeria contributed immensely to the success of the third project ranging from staffing and provision of accommodation and project vehicle to a centre created in the ministry for proper coordination of French teaching in Nigerian schools.
“Since Nigeria has adopted French as the second official language, the Federal Ministry of Education through the Nigeria French Language, NFLP, implemented two French Language projects.
“We are here because the third project, FSP project No 2014-15, dedicated to teaching of French in Nigerian higher institutions is about to end”.
Nigeria adopted French as its second official language in 1996, under the administration of late Head of State, Sani Abacha.
According to Mr Anwukah, 20 teachers of French in colleges of education who were outstanding at the end of the training at the Centres for French Teaching and Documentation were sent to France for further training from July 17 to August 11.
Similarly, the project evaluator, E. Berard, said the aim of the project was to support continuous teaching of French in higher education in Nigeria.
Mrs. Berard said the project trained over 300 teachers as at January from 61 colleges of education in the Centres for French Teaching and Documentation, CFTDs, in Jos, Enugu and Ibadan.
“Jos, Enugu and Ibadan cover all participants from the geo-political zones. But we didn’t cover Ebonyi State because there is no French in the colleges of education. And for the North-east, it is complex,” she said.
She said 15 lecturers were trained on the methodology of teaching French for business at the French Institute.