By Olayinka Latona
THE Bible Society of Nigeria has broken a 54-year-old Bible translation record with the completion of three New Testament translations in a record time of five years.
A statement from BSN weekend says the “Society had set a period of 12 years for the completion of a Bible translation project, which it has never achieved since it was founded in 1966. But it has been able to complete the Epie, Ogbia New Testaments in five years and Okun New Testament within four years and three months.
“Its latest two full Bibles – Kalabari and Okrika, which were dedicated in 2018, took over 40 years each to be completed,” the statement added.
According to BSN, the Old Testaments of the Epie, Ogbia and Okun Bibles are currently in advanced stages of completion. Society has so far spent N161.87 million on the Epie and Ogbia Bible translation projects, while the sum of N47.85 million has been spent on the Okun Bible translation project.
While 12 translators have been working on the Epie and Ogbia projects that were started from scratch with the development of the orthography of the two languages, three translators were engaged for the Okun project.
The Bible Society of Nigeria started the Epie and Ogbia Bible translation projects in 2015, while Okun was added in 2016. Plans are on to dedicate the New Testaments of these languages later this year. Seven other Bible translation projects in different Nigerian languages are ongoing. The Epie and Ogbia languages are spoken in Bayelsa State, while Okun is spoken in Kogi, Kwara and Ekiti states.