The Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, on Thursday, lauded the launch of translation of Nigeria’s constitution in three indigenous languages, saying efforts would expedite nation-building.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Prince Ade Ajayi Foundation (PAAF), Centre for Constitutional Literacy and Civic Education, translated Nigeria’s 1999 Constitution into Hausa, Yoruba and Igbo languages and the Naija Patriots Constitution app, which contains the audio format of the constitution.
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The foundation led by Prince Ade Ajayi, also published the book, “I Love Nigeria, My Country” to promote citizens’ passionate love for the country.
While unveiling the translations and the book, Oba Adeyemi said: “For a young man to have translated the constitution of Nigeria 1999 as amended into three major languages is a feat.
“It is an opportunity for Hausa, Yoruba and Igbo people to read the constitution in their own local language and come to a conclusion whether the constitution is working or not.”
The traditional ruler, who decried that Ajayi Crowther, haven singlehandedly translated the Bible into Yoruba and other languages, died unsung and uncelebrated, prayed that the PAAF president, would not die uncelebrated for the feat. The Alaafin, who expressed a little disappointment about the absence of many invited dignitaries at the event, said that Nigeria constitution needed to be worked upon to allow restructuring for the nation to make progress.
The Alaafin, who noted that he had read the constitution many times, urged Nigerians to read and understand the workings of the constitution, with the opportunity provided by PAAF.
Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State described the efforts of PAAF as laudable and apt, especially at this time in the nation’s history. Sanwo-Olu, who was represented by his Special Adviser on Development Agenda for Western Nigeria, Mr Adekunle Olayinka, said: “It will have a far reaching impart in governance.
“We should now expect contributions of people in governance, even from pepper sellers on the street.”
Also, Sen. Bola Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos state, said that broadening the understanding of Nigerians about the constitution, especially with the translation of the document into three indigenous languages, was a big and laudable job.
Represented by Mr Ademola Sadiq, the immediate past Lagos State Legal Adviser of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Tinubu said: “It is always better when everybody is aware of his rights, duties and obligations to the state. Prince Ade Ajayi deserves all the praises and commendations.
“This will make the country better to govern and make the followers easier to manage. We don’t have to wait for China to come and translate our constitution into our languages.”
In his remarks, Mr Segun Olulade, a two-term former member of the Lagos State House of Assembly, who described the efforts of PAAF foundation as a remarkable feat, said: “A lot of people are going to know their rights and ask questions.
“He (Ajayi) has started a new revolution in the constitution of Nigeria. With the translations, a lot of people at the grassroots will understand constitution and pick interest in getting good governance.”
The Executive Vice Chairman, Emerging Africa Group, Mrs Toyin Sanni, one of the project sponsors, said that understanding of the constitution would create a better Nigeria.