Growing up, I was awed by people who spoke English with an American accent (note that then, ‘America’ was a generic term for the whites, and so every ‘tush’-sounding English was American). Sometimes, I day-dreamed of being a student of an elite school, complete with the phonetics.
Now, I’m still hugely impressed by good speaking, but the ‘American’ accent infatuation (for lack of a better word) has lost its effect on me. Recently, I read of an initiative a young man is starting up. In the simplest of terms, he is trying to teach Nigerian kids to speak like the British. And the only question I’m asking is “WHY?” Nothing wrong with acquiring an accent, but learning it? Why?
English language and all its appurtenances should be taught the way it should in schools, and as long as my Igbo brothers leave the l’s and r’s in their appropriate places (not umblerra), as long as the Yoruba man gets rid of his h-factor (neither happle for apple, nor ave for have), as long as the hausa man stops the abuse of his f’s and p’s (conflict and cooperation, not conplict and cooferation), I guess our Nigerian accent is good to go.