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#RanarHausa: The story behind International Hausa Language Day

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Abdulbaqi Jari

Mukhtar Yahya Usman

For the fifth year in succession, Hausa speaking people around the globe have observed the International Hausa Language Day on August 26.

The day is not officially recognized by any government or United Nations agency but has gained acceptance among academics, the diaspora, and especially among social media users.

In an exclusive interview with KANO TODAY, one of the initiators of the day, Abdulbaqi Jari whose twitter handle is @bahaushee said they initiated the #RanarHausa to promote the use of Hausa language online.

Mr. Jari who currently works for the BBC Hausa service said the aim of the day has been broadened into promoting Hausa culture as well as increasing awareness and respect for the history and achievements of the Hausa language and Hausa speaking people.

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‘’It was on August 26, 2015 that we  came to realize that  most Hausa people on Twitter  communicate in English rather than Hausa.

We therefore decided to communicate exclusively in Hausa language for a whole day using the hash tag #RanarHausa.

“This is the reason why the day was created five years ago, and so far we are beginning to achieve our aims of disseminating Hausa language into every corner of the world.’’ He said.

Hausa Day or Obscenity Day?

True to its origin, #RanarHausa 2019 is marked more as a social media event even though there were cultural celebrations and academic presentations in at least 11 countries around the world.

Social media users observed the day by posting updates in Hausa and displaying mastery in the use of Hausa figures of speech especially proverbs and tong twisters.

While some users posted native Hausa proverbs others displayed their creativity by coining new proverbs based on recent political happenings in Nigeria.

However #RanarHausa 2019 created a controversy when some social media users took advantage of the day to post obscene proverbs.

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