Nigeria and China began diplomatic ties over 46 years ago, however citizens of both countries barely know enough about each other culturally. In these changing times some Chinese students at Beijing Foreign Studies University take up Hausa language as a major.
There was festivity in the air amid a flurry of activities taking place at the Peking University’s International Culture Festival in Beijing which took place late October this year. People roamed about colorful tents some representing various countries, others curious to have a taste of culture as they queued to have their hands decorated in henna at the Pakistani Booth, while others joined the merry young men and women in a traditional dance near the Turkish booth to celebrate their anniversary.
At the Nigerian booth, there were no Nigerians captaining the activities apart from a PhD student Mr Abba, the others were Chinese. Li Chunguang, fondly called, ‘Bako’ a lecturer at the Beijing Foreign Studies University teaching Hausa language and Hausa literature, seemed to have everything under control with his embracing cheerful smile, and fluency in the language. It was quite compelling and at the same time refreshing to watch the students dressed up in Nigerian traditional costumes.
Strengthening the relationship between Nigeria and China has become imperative as both governments begin to focus on more people to people exchanges as well as developing economic partnerships. In reality, not many Chinese citizens know about Nigeria, or that it has over 500 ethnic groups with the three major languages to include Hausa, Yoruba and Igbo.
Source Leadership Nigeria