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Brazil Adopts Yoruba as Official Language

The number of speakers of Yoruba is over 30 million and still counting, It is a pluricentric language spoken principally in Benin and Nigeria, with communities in Sierra Leone, Liberia other parts of Africa, the Americas, and Europe.

On the 7th of September 2018, the Brazilian government gave Yoruba a pride of place among foreign languages spoken in the country.

In a reported interview with the Brazilian minister of culture, Dr Sérgio Sá leitão over the weekend in Brazil that the government has introduced the compulsory study of African History and Yoruba language into the primary and secondary schools curriculum.

The program tagged “AYO” featured prominent names in African literature, including Prof Wole Soyinka and the first female doctorate degree holder in Yoruba Philosophy, Dr Sophie Oluwole (aka Mamalawo of the University of Ibadan).

At an event at the Institute of African Studies, University of Sao Paulo, in Brazil Dr Sergio spoke of the importance Yoruba history holds. According to him, the inclusion of African History and Yoruba Language in the curriculum would help cement a better relationship with the African Brazilian people to their roots and thus encourage the understandings of the language among other important languages in Brazil.

Dr. Sá Leitão made it clear at the event that the government will continue to promote the importance of African culture in Brazil, bringing back to Afro-descendants the culture and tradition of the African people.

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