KỌLA OWOLABI – Professor of Linguistics

KỌLA OWOLABI – Professor of Linguistics

Kọla Owolabi is a Professor of Linguistics who specializes in syntax and semantics (with emphasis on African languages). He is an internationally-renowned scholar of Yorùbá linguistics and the force behind Yorùbá language engineering and revitalization. He was a most important actor in the processes of conceptualization, framework design and drawing up of documentation in regard of the University of Ibadan’s Yorùbá Language Centre, and was appointed the centre’s Interim Director in 2010 and the pioneer Director from 2011 to 2018. His current focus is on the use of Yorùbá language in specialized domains (science, technology, legislation and politics, etc.) for empowerment and sustainable development.

Kọla Owolabi has participated in several Yorùbá terminology workshops; Led and coordinated the Yorùbá Team of Translators of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (phase 1) into Yorùbá language as mandated by the Nigeria Federal Ministry of Information and National Orientation under the Hon. Minister, Chief Chukwuemeka Chikelu. He also participated in the following English – Yorùbá translation projects:

  • Revized Highway Code of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, sponsored by the Nigeria Federal Road Safety Commission
  • Sub-Saharan African Women’s Management Training Outreach Program (WMTOP) training materials, as mandated by the Pan African Institute for Development (based in Abidjan, Cote D’Ivore)
  • Manuals and Workshops addressing ‘Twelve Critical Areas of Concern’ relating to the Advancement of the Right of Women in Nigeria based on Beijin Declaration and Platform for Action, 4th World Conference on Women, Beijin, China, September, 1995, as mandated by the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development (FMWA & SD), Abuja, Nigeria, in conjunction with State Commissioners for Women.

He is currently leading and coordinating a team of lexicographers in the production of English – Yorùbá/Yorùbá – English bilingual dictionary, sponsored the University Press PLC, Ibadan, Nigeria.