Gbékoun [NEW]

According to a single article from Top Média Bénin, at some point in the recent past a member of the Gbékoun community named Togbédji Adigbe created a script for his community–though, as with many indigenously-created African scripts, his ambition was that it might be used by all peoples for all languages in the continent.

“To verify and experience the strength of the mother tongue, a compatriot, [the] late Togbedji ADIGBE, originally from Dangbo, from the village of Mondotokpa put himself in conditions of independence from the West, speaking only his mother tongue and eating only local products. He was able to discover the model of any development that the entire Black continent lacked, namely an alphabet with 33 letters (24 consonants and 9 vowels) capable of transcribing all African languages ​​in reality and the resonance of pronunciations. He used this alphabet to write several works on development themes in the archive currently at his headquarters.”

After his death, his work was reportedly taken up by a compatriot.

“His successor, the late HOUESSE AYIGBEDEKIN Vidéhouenou, a native of Abomey who put himself in the same conditions, in turn used this alphabet to correct certain Western theories taught in our schools and not adapted to our realities.”

In spite of the deaths of both the script’s early champions, it seems to be stable and in use. The type/design company Jamra Patel is working with the user community, and draft fonts and keyboards have been sent to their contact in the user community–which is thought to number about 300–for review and revisions. Final versions of both are expected to be completed in late 2023, and script details are being collected to prepare a Unicode proposal.

Togbédji Adigbe and his invention. Photo: Top Media Benin.

Latitude: 9° 19′ 18.20″ N
Longitude: 2° 18′ 36.02″ E