By Prof. Amos Ade Kukoyi
Europeans are the smartest people in the world. Do you know that once you step out of the UK there is no country whose language is English in Europe? Virtually every European country has its own language. It is only in Austria that you have German as national language after Germany. But then Austria is “Germany” with a different name. Then in few countries like Switzerland and Belgium you see them with two or three languages because of their peculiar history.
Spain and Portugal lie side by side in the Iberian peninsula. Spain speaks Spanish, Portugal speaks Portuguese. Each minds its own business.
Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland are called the Nordic countries. Each is a country with its own language, including Iceland that has 360,000 people. All the five Nordic counties have a combined population of 27 million. Germany is beside the Netherlands and is close to France, Czech Republic, Poland, Italy, Luxembourg. Yet each of them has its own language and lives its own life in peace.
Even when countries like USSR, Yugoslavia and Czechoslavakia merged different peoples together to feel big, they eventually realized that it was not working, and dissolved into smaller homogenous countries to give themselves peace and happiness.
Ironically, it is the same Europe that went round the world amalgamating peoples with different languages and opposing worldviews because of their business interests, and ended up creating problems across Asia, Africa and South America. Some of their victims have lent themselves sense and found how to solve their problems. Others are still wandering in the wilderness, praying for something to happen.
Prof. Kukoyi is a retired UNILAG Lecturer.