Mashaba on the right path with the use of IsiZulu
22 JANUARY 2015
As part of preserving our country’s heritage and multilingualism, the Pan South African Language Board (PanSALB) wishes to applaud Bafana Bafana national head coach, Ephraim “Shakes” Mashaba for choosing to speak IsiZulu during a press briefing conference before his Afcon game on Monday 19 with Algeria.
Mashaba successfully showed solidarity in the promotion and preservation of our indigenous languages by conversing in IsiZulu which is one of our country’s 11 official languages, following part of the desert foxes contingent who spoke in Arabic.
It is believed that Mashaba did a like-for like treatment as South African journalist were mistreated during Algeria’s press conference after the conference was done in French and Arabic.
“This is definitely a watershed moment in the history of football as it offers us as a country an opportunity to reclaim the value of linguistic pluralism to also rediscover the hidden store of knowledge,” said the Chairperson of the Board, Professor Mbulungeni Madiba.
“Mashaba did not just show bravery but exercised his linguitisc right as protected by the the Universal Declaration of Linguistic Rights (UDLR) (1996) as Algeria was allowed to to speak in Arabic, without any efforts by the organisers to accommodate those who did nopt speak nor underatdn the language,” he added.
The promotion of IsiZulu by Mashaba, furthermore, gives us the opportunity of participating more fully in the international/global community, since the spin off would lead to learning the language for wider communication for purposes of trade and international communication.
Research conducted in this country in the 1930s and 1940s showed that bilingual people demonstrate greater social tolerance and are more likely to have academic success than monolingual people are and people are motivated to learn other languages when they need to communicate for reasons, which relate to trade and economic activities.