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Hausa-English bilingual dictionary launched in Kano

A Hausa-English Dictionary was Saturday launched at the Bayero University Kano (BUK). The 627-page book, written by an Indiana-based linguistics scholar from the United States,…

A Hausa-English Dictionary was Saturday launched at the Bayero University Kano (BUK).

The 627-page book, written by an Indiana-based linguistics scholar from the United States, Paul Newman, and his wife, Roxana, was published by BUK press.

Newman was in 1972 the pioneer Director, Centre for the Study of Nigerian Languages of the then Abdullahi Bayero College, which metamorphosed to BUK.

According to the book reviewer and Executive Director, Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC), Professor Isma’il Junaidu, the publication is the most comprehensive Hausa bilingual dictionary since the 1930s.

Junaidu said the dictionary was written in standardised Hausa, while its authors were one of the leading authorities in Afro-Chadic languages, globally.

 Speaking during the launch, Newman, who was represented by the Dean, BUK School of Postgraduate Studies, Professor Mustapha Ahmad Isa, said the launch of the book was a great milestone in research in the Hausa language, and it also coincided with his 50th anniversary of coming to Nigeria.

“With its vast number of its native speakers and users globally, Hausa is today no doubt the most important language in Africa and one of the biggest in the world,” said Newman.

Earlier, the BUK Vice Chancellor, Professor Sagir Adamu Abbas, said the launching of the dictionary was not by accident, but implied the university’s attraction to knowledge and research development.

The event was graced by the emirs of Kano, Kazaure, Karaye, and the Polish Ambassador to Nigeria, Joanna Tarnawska; representatives of governors of Kano, Bauchi, Jigawa, and Katsina, as well as a renowned business mogul, Alhaji Aminu Dantata.