Nigeria is an English-speaking nation. Many Nigerians have English language as their mother-tongue(please if you don’t know the meaning of “mother tongue, please go and look it up), but there are everyday realities that wake us to the fact that English language is not our native language.

Just incase Nigerians being compelled to write English language proficiency exams(IELTS and all of its likes) is not convincing enough, the constriction of the language is another pointer.

Language is a social tool. Some of our ways are simply not covered by English language.

A good example is our relationship.

If one is not your father, mother, brother, sister, cousin, nephew, niece or all the step things, it’s almost as if you don’t have any relationship with the person at all.

How best to establish a thing does not exist if not by leaving it without a name.

We are more than that. That is why we have “second cousins,” “distant cousins.” That is why a cousin’s cousin is lumped together as cousin. That is why a person will have Aunties, too numerous to mention, even though his or her father only has two sisters and the mother, an only daughter. That is why a good friend gets to be called brother or sister.

We are not bad at grammar. We are not incapable of learning the correct grammar. Our relationships are just far more than the scope English language allows, covers.

And no, we wouldn’t prune our family tree just because the grammar doesn’t cover it.

Language is a beautiful thing. It exposes the limit and bounds of people.

It is of most value to its native speakers. It is a thing of pride and comfort. It is the shortest route to home. Just as (knowing) the language of others is a route for their home.

In all, we live in one world, the more of others we know, the better for us. More importantly, the more of ourselves we know, the better for us and others.

The beauty of all these is that the human brain has the ability to learn multiple languages and non displaces another.

If languages are trophies, the more you have under your belt, the better. So if you have only one or two on your rack, I challenge you today, go rack up some more.

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