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BBC 🐦Pidgin Version Coming to 🇳🇬Nigeria

On Monday the British media giant will launch an online portal that will be entirely in Pidgin and feature text news, features and podcasts. "It's a challenging, exciting experiment," said Bilkisu Labaran, the corporation's editor-in-chief in Lagos, the commercial capital of the west African powerhouse.

Labaran and her 15-strong team, which includes web designers, journalists and social media experts, are seeking to transform Nigeria's use of Pidgin, under the banner "make dem hear". The project marks a shift for Labaran for whom speaking Pidgin at home while still a child would have earned her a stern parental rebuke.

Previously, Pidgin was considered a language for the impoverished lower classes. Pidgin takes inspiration from Portuguese, the first European language to reach Nigeria's shores, English, the enduring colonial-era language, as well as Jamaican patois imported by former slaves returning to the continent. The language has shifted and evolved uninterrupted since its inception.

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