This is the first of, I want to hope and pray, very very many notes that will be forwarded to each of you as members of the Institute
Let me thank you all, once again for the confidence reposed in me and all the members of the new leadership of NITI. I wish to assure you all that we shall endeavour to maintain and thereafter lift our Institute to even greater heights.
Apart from the formal recognition of the Bill which has come a long way under the very able leadership of Professor Ekundayo SIMPSON, there is also the question of membership coupled with a structured pattern of translation and interpretation practice in Nigeria.
There are, of course, two easily identifiable groups: those who have full professional qualifications to practice translation and interpretation, and those who, by virtue of a considerable number of occasions, have been more or less successful (depending on the circumstances and their basic claims to meaningful bilingualism!) in actual translation and interpretation.
All told, the 'tribe' of translators and interpreters in Nigeria can be deemed to have a good number of seasoned qualified practitioners (need I name them now!) just as we do have a sizeable number of those who garnered experience 'on the job'. The sad portion of the lot is the horde of interlopers who have profound disregard for the finished product once the business is off their hands more so as the unsuspecting (and necessarily ignorant) client would have paid.
We can never be too vigilant in laying solid foundations for a permanent structure. Just as builders would assure us that they are building far beyond tomorrow, so also must translators and interpreters bear in mind that they are part of eternity. I need only recall the excellent translators of our Holy Books which now constitute the very basis of the extreme activities of our tele-evangelists and tele-ayatollahs.
Our dynamic and highly digitalised secretary has begun what promises to be an enduring tradition and I enjoin us all to visit our WEBSITE on a very regular basis.
One final point: can we begin to ruminate on how to set the benchmark for admission into the Institute? In other words, who qualifies? I am proposing a benchmark minimum of
For interpreters: 200 hours of booth or ten conferences
For translators: At least five tests into either English or one of the languages studied to Master's level. These are ideas and I believe that they can become the starting point to other contributions.
Once again, thank you and please feel free to react. Have a very nice day and thank God that the only Gustave you know is not a hurricane, or ouragan as the French have it!