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Reading: SHOCKING: Meet Female Student Who Can Speaks 24 Languages.
Reading: SHOCKING: Meet Female Student Who Can Speaks 24 Languages.

SHOCKING: Meet Female Student Who Can Speaks 24 Languages.

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Festus Conteh
By Festus Conteh 458 Views 5 Min Read
5 Min Read
SHOCKING: Meet Female Student Who Can Speaks 24 Languages.
SHOCKING: Meet Female Student Who Can Speaks 24 Languages.

Female Student Prosper Oluwafunmibi Babalola is a 400-level student who is popularly known as Prosperlingua’ for her exceptional polyglottal skill of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Ibadan is a hyperpolyglot, culture enthusiast, writer, and entrepreneur.

In a chat with Tijani Abdulkabeer, Babalola spoke about her journey into multilingualism, the many doors of opportunities it opened for her, and her plans for the future.

Tijani Abdulkabeer (T.A.): How did you become multilingual?

Oluwafunmibi Babalola (O.B.): I think it’s just interest that keeps me going. There is no explanation for it. It’s my life. I love languages. I am passionate about it. It just happens. I hear a language, and I pick it up.

(T.A.): How long did it take you to learn these languages? Mention the languages you speak fluently.

(O.B.): I have been learning languages since I was a kid. I remember I did French and a bit of Latin in Primary school, and I used to buy language books. Since I have been old enough to read and write, I have been learning languages.

I speak German, Spanish, Hindi, Korean, Japanese, Twi, Zulu, Russian, Chinese, Indonesian, Dutch, French, Latin, Hangul, Italian, English, Hausa, Yoruba, Egun, Egede, and Igbo, among others. 24 languages.

(T.A.): Tell us about your achievements due to the many languages you speak.

(O.B.): I have achieved a lot in languages. It has opened unimaginable doors for me. You know, people’s expressions when they know you can communicate in different languages. And the recent achievement is my tweet which went viral. I only made a careless tweet to sell myself, but before I knew it, my phone started making funny sounds. Too many notifications from several people across the world; [People from different races] were sending messages to offer me jobs. I have had so many interviews and live videos. Celebrities I have always looked up to were following me, sending DMs. Everything was just crazy.

Before now, there were times I used to go from church to church to present God’s name in different languages. Hausa particularly has helped me get suya, free rides, and more on several occasions.

I did many freelance jobs for primarily private individuals and organisations. Something big is also in the pipe, but I can’t disclose it until the organisation unveils me. I will definitely share it when the deal is official.

(T.A.): As a medical student, what are some challenges you faced in attaining mastery in these languages?

(O.B.): There are a lot of challenges. Veterinary school is very crazy. We have classes from 8 am – 5 Pm daily. And you have to resume early so as not to be locked out. But when it’s about learning languages, I am abnormal. I know how to strike a balance. For instance, I have used Duolingo consistently for about a year without missing out on a day. So, how is this possible? It’s consistency. It’s just like a fun activity to me. It’s like an escape from Vet school for me. I see it as fun, not hard work.

(T.A.): What motivates you?

(O.B.): Well, I can’t remember any day I wanted to quit but there are days I felt tired to carry on. You know there is a saying that goes thus – ‘I have come too far only to quit.’ Like, it has been part of me. It has been my life. So, why is it now that I am going to quit? I can’t just quit. The passion keeps me going too. Anytime I am tired, I remember how much I love languages. How much I can’t do without languages and so reminding myself that giving up is not an option.

(T.A.): How big of a role do you think languages can play in fostering unity in Nigeria?

(O.B.): Languages can play a huge role because one of the significant problems we have as Nigerians is the fact that we are divided in terms of the tongue. People don’t understand each other, and they don’t get to. So, if we can find common ground to embrace one another culture or learn each other’s way of life, we are going to get that much-needed unity.

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Festus Conteh is an international youth that functions conveniently in all forms of writing including article writing, news, script, content writing, constitution and project/proposal writing. Writing is fun to Festus and has brought fame and recognition in his clime. In 2019, he was awarded best upcoming writer in an online writing completion that was organized by the Association of Sierra Leonean Authors (ASLA). After his impactful contribution to national development and cohesion through writing, he was nominated for the African Genius Award for the Best Writer in Africa Award Category an award he lost to one of the greatest African Writers - Chinua Achebe. In 2022, Festus was one of the applicants to the Commonwealth Youth Council (CYC) as Vice Chairperson (Policy and Advocacy) a process that met imperil feedback. As a freelancer, Festus has written articles for magazines, newspapers, and media houses and his articles have attracted big media houses including BBC, Aljazeera and Legit. Ng and is the Head of Programs at Salone Messenger a public relations firm based in Sierra Leone with the latest news and information. He is the founder of Africa’s Wakanda a platform that spotlight the beauty of Africa. Festus is also a perpetual volunteer in life-changing causes and has shown great commitment and dedication to being a catalyst and solution to the challenges faced by young people like himself. Festus currently serves as the Secretary General of the Africa Youth Leaders movement which is a network of youth between the ages of 20 – 30 years who have shown achievement, leadership potential and commitment to make a difference. Festus is also the Africa Focal Point of Youth for Change Initiative, which is a platform through which young people can access resources, be empowered and given the opportunity to grow to become useful members of society who will participate in the development of their communities and nation. Along with another Africa Youth platform, Festus has Co-Founded the Future of Africa initiative which is an advocate forum with the aim to bring together local and international socio-economic stakeholders to support innovative programs aimed at advancing the radical and practical progress of adoption awareness-vulnerable children and youth and youth leadership-through interlinking local, regional and international resources and opportunities.