Emergence of English New Native Speakers in Nigeria: Reclassifying the English Speakers

Babatunde, Samuel Akanbi


This research decolonises the concept of new native speakers to mean “those who are born in the inner circle” and establishes that, there are native speakers of English in Nigeria. More recently, a group of speakers has been identified known as; the English New Native Speakers. These speakers are mostly monolinguals, who have a good command of the English Language. They are without or with the bit of ability to speak or comprehend the local language(s) used around them. The new native speaker is a 21st-century phenomenon because these speakers have not been in existence in Nigeria before this time. This paper establishes the emergence of the New English Native Speakers in Nigeria and calls for the addition of new native speakers of English in the taxonomy of the existing classification of the speakers of English in Nigeria. This paper, therefore, advocates for the re-classification of the English speakers in Nigeria to include these new speakers. I postulate that the new taxonomy of the speakers in Nigeria should be grouped thus: English new native speakers (speakers with little or no indigenous language), English as a second language (those who developed English as a second language, English as the first language (those who speak English as the first language and later developed an indigenous language).


New Native Speakers, English as Second Language, English as First Language

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